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ATI Labuduwa

Civil Engineering

Trainee Manual

Training Unit

Foundation Engineering

Theory

No: CE 020

Training Unit

Foundation Engineering

Theoretical Part

No.: CE 020

Edition: 2009

All Rights Reserved

Education and Training Systems, DM-1

Lunzerstrasse 64 P.O.Box 36, A 4031 Linz / Austria

Tel. (+ 43 / 732) 6987 – 3475

Fax (+ 43 / 732) 6980 – 4271

Website: www.mcelinz.com

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FOUNDATION ENGINEERING

LIST OF CONTENT

CONTENTS Page

1.1 Introduction ...........................................................................................................6

1.2 Models Used in Design of Foundations ................................................................7

1.3 Engineering Properties of Soils .............................................................................8

1.3.1 Soil Volume and Density Relationships...........................................................13

1.4 Strength of Soils..................................................................................................16

2.1 Introduction .........................................................................................................18

2.2 Definition of Bearing Capacity .............................................................................18

2.2.1 Ultimate Bearing Capacity...............................................................................18

2.2.2 Net Ultimate Bearing Capacity ........................................................................18

2.2.3 Safe Bearing Capacity.....................................................................................19

2.2.4 Safe Settlement Pressure ...............................................................................19

2.2.5 Allowable Bearing Pressure ............................................................................19

2.2.6 Bearing Capacity Faliure Patterns..................................................................19

2.3 Terzaghi’s Bearing Capacity Equation and Its Limitations ..................................21

2.4 Major Factors Affecting Bearing Capacity of Shallow Foundation ......................25

2.4.1 Effect of Water Table on Ultimate Bearing Capacity .......................................25

2.5 Factor of Safety...................................................................................................26

2.6 Bearing Capacity of Shallow Foundation in Clays ..............................................28

2.7 Bearing Capacity of Shallow Foundation in Sands .............................................30

3.1 Introduction .........................................................................................................31

3.2 Types of Shallow Foundations ............................................................................31

3.3 Design Considerations ........................................................................................31

3.4 Depth of Footings................................................................................................33

3.5 Foundation Loadings and Selection of Foundations ...........................................35

3.6 Design of Footings ..............................................................................................36

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4 DESIGN OF RAFT FOUNDATIONS ...........................................................................38

4.1 Introduction .........................................................................................................38

4.2 Types of Rafts and Their Use .............................................................................39

4.3 Stiffness or Rigidity of Soil Structure System ......................................................39

4.4 Allowable Soil Pressure for Rafts in Cohesive Soils ...........................................41

4.4.1 Allowable pressure based on settlement.........................................................41

4.4.2 Allowable pressures based on strength in cohesive soils ...............................42

4.5 Allowable Soil Pressure for Rafts in Cohesionless Soils.....................................44

4.6 Illustrative Examples ...........................................................................................46

5.1 Introduction .........................................................................................................49

5.2 Types of Piles......................................................................................................49

5.3 Factors Affecting Choice of Type of Piles ...........................................................50

5.4 Load Carrying Capacity by Various Methods ......................................................51

5.4.1 Piles in Granular Soils .....................................................................................52

5.4.2 Piles in Cohesive Soils ....................................................................................56

5.4.3 Capacity of Piles in c- Soils by Static Formula ..............................................58

5.5 Uplift Resistance of Piles ....................................................................................59

5.6 Negative Skin Friction .........................................................................................60

5.6.1 Estimation of Negative Skin Friction................................................................60

5.6.2 Method of Mitigating Negative Skin Friction ....................................................62

5.7 Comparison of Capacities of Driven and Bored Piles .........................................63

5.8 Illustrative Examples ...........................................................................................63

6.1 Steps in Choosing Type of Foundation ...............................................................70

6.2 Bearing Capacity and Settlement........................................................................71

6.3 Design Loads ......................................................................................................71

7.1 Introduction .........................................................................................................74

7.2 Types of Retaining Walls ....................................................................................74

7.3 Nature and Magnitudes of Earth Pressure ..........................................................76

7.4 Pressure on Retaining Structures .......................................................................80

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7.5 Design of Retaining Walls ...................................................................................81

7.5.1 Design of Basement Walls ..............................................................................82

7.5.2 Design of Cantilever Retaining Wall................................................................82

7.5.3 Economic Design of High Retaining Walls ......................................................83

7.6 Importance of Drainage of Backfill ......................................................................84

8.1 Introduction .........................................................................................................86

8.2 Types of Wells or Caissons.................................................................................86

8.3 Forces Acting on Wells .......................................................................................89

8.4 Bearing capacity of Wells ....................................................................................90

8.5 Methods of Analysis ............................................................................................91

8.6 Stability analysis of Well Foundations .................................................................92

9.1 Introduction .........................................................................................................94

9.2 Depth, Lateral Extent of Exploration and Borings for Exploration .......................95

9.2.1 Depth of Exploration........................................................................................95

9.3 Methods for Sub-soil Investigation ......................................................................98

9.4 Details and Presentation of Soil Investigation Report .......................................100

REFERENCES .................................................................................................................102

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FOUNDATION ENGINNERING

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

Know the engineering properties

Different types of foundations

Choice of foundations

Design of shallow foundation

Design of deep foundation

Design of raft foundation

Earth pressure on retaining structure

Know basics of well foundations or caissons

Know basics of soil exploration and geological investigation of sites

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1 ENGINEERING PROPERTIES OF SOILS

1.1 Introduction

The terms rock and soil, as used by the civil engineer, imply a clear distinction between

two kinds of foundation materials. Rock is considered to be a natural aggregate of mineral

grains connected by strong and permanent cohesive forces. Soil, on the other hand, is

regarded as a natural aggregate of mineral grains, with or without organic constituents that

can be separated by gentle mechanical means such as agitation in water. These

convenient definitions are generally understood and are used in this book. Nevertheless, in

reality there is no sharp distinction between rock and soil. The processes of weathering

may weaken even the strongest and most rigid rocks, and some highly indurate soils may

exhibit strengths comparable to those of weathered rock.

The design of foundations of structures such as buildings, bridges, and dams generally

requires knowledge of such factors as:

1. The load that will be transmitted by the superstructure to the foundation system,

2. The requirements of the local building code,

3. The behavior and stress-related deformability of soils that will support the foundation

system, and

4. The geological conditions of the soil under consideration. To a foundation engineer, the

last two factors are extremely important because they concern soil mechanics.

compressibility, and shear strength - can be assessed by proper laboratory testing. And,

recently, emphasis has been placed on in situ determination of strength and deformation

properties of soil, because this process avoids the sample disturbances that occur during

field exploration. However, under certain circumstances, all of the needed parameters

cannot be determined or are not determined because of economic or other reasons. In

such cases, the engineer must make certain assumptions regarding the properties of the

soil. To assess the accuracy of soil parameters - whether they were determined in the

laboratory and the field or were assumed - the engineer must have a good grasp of the

basic principles of soil mechanics. At the same time, he or she must realize that the natural

soil deposits on which foundations are constructed are not homogeneous in most cases.

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Thus the engineer must have a thorough understanding of the geology of the area - that is,

the origin and nature of soil stratification and also the groundwater conditions. Foundation

engineering is a clever combination of soil mechanics, engineering geology, and proper

judgment derived from past experience. To a certain extent, it may be called an "art."

This chapter serves primarily as a review of the basic geotechnical properties of soils. It

includes topics such as grain-size distribution, plasticity, models used in design of

foundations and shear strength parameters of soils.

In general, following models are used to solve practical problems in soil mechanics:

1. By using empirical or thumb rules without any calculations based on past experience

or local practice. For example, we will design a low retaining wall by this method.

Similarly for timbering of a shallow excavation up to 3 m height, it is more economical

to use local practices.

2. By theoretical calculations using the soil properties and theories of soil mechanics as

in the study of the stability of an earth slope.

3. By actual prototype testing under field conditions after theoretical study as in the

design of pile foundations.

4. By adopting construction with the observational method of using field indicators to

monitor soil behaviour as in soil improvement by pre-loading.

The method of using combination of numerical calculations for initial design combined with

prototype testing and field observations is the most commonly used and recommended

method for foundation construction in major projects. The pure observational method has

the disadvantage that we may come across many surprises during construction so that

forward planning becomes difficult unless we have large amount of experience on similar

projects. The method of numerical calculation requires the choice of representative

parameters which can be obtained only from very accurate field and laboratory

investigations. It is of utmost Importance that representative soil properties are used in

design calculations. An approximate calculation with satisfactory soil properties wiII give

us better results than an exact theoretical analysis with doubtful soil properties. In case of

solving problems using theoretical calculations one or more of the methods are used as

shown in Table 1.1.

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Table 1.1 Models used in soil mechanics

Problem Model

Stress distribution Boussinesq's elastic half space

Plastic failure Rankine’s plastic state

Consolidation and settlement of Terzaghi's model - Spring supported piston and

cohesive soils dashpot

Coulomb-Mohr model and Roscoe's critical

Strength of soils

state model

Earth pressure Coulomb's wedge or Rankine's plastic failure

Stiffness of soil Elastic half space or Winkler models

Contact pressure Elastic half space or Winkler models

Soil properties can be divided into two groups namely: 1) physical properties and 2)

mechanical or engineering properties. They are also known as index properties. Important

engineering properties are presented below.

1) Physical Properties:

These properties give us a general indication of the type and state of the soil we are

dealing with. They are also known as index properties. The important physical propertis

are:

Geological origin

Grain size distribution

Unit weight

Specific gravity

Liquid limit, plastic limit and shrinkage limit

Natural water content of fine grained soils

Void ratio of clays

Relative density of sands

Activity of clays

Sensitivity of clays

Swelling index of clays.

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2) Mechanical or Engineering Properties:

These are the properties we use in our engineering calculations. The important

engineering properties are the following:

Modulus of subgrade reaction

Deformation modulus (modulus of elasticity)

Consolidation characteristics

Other special properties like permeability for special problems.

One of the fundamental differences of natural soil deposits from other manufactured civil

engineering materials like steel is its non-uniformity. At the same site, soil may vary along

its length and depth of the site. Hence, what we should aim at is to get a representative

general value of the properties. Because of this reason, in soil engineering, we seek to find

properties by laboratory tests as well as by special field tests. Much data can be obtained

from simple field tests like standard penetration tests (SPT) or static cone penetration tests

(CPT). A foundation engineer should necessarily be aware of the empirical relations

between simple field tests and the engineering properties of the soil. Defintion of some

improtant engineering properties are given below.

Water Content, wN

Water content determinations are made on the recovered soil samples to obtain the natural

water content, wN. Water content determination are also commonly made in soil

improvement studies (compaction, using admixtures, etc). The ratio of weight of water, Ww

to the weight of soil solids, Ws, expressed as a percentage but usually used in decimal

form is known as water conetnt, wN.

Ww

wN 100% (1.1)

Ws

Grain Size

The grain size distribution test is used for soil classification and has value in designing soil

filters. A soil filter is used to allow drainage of pore water under a hydraulic gradient with

erosion of soil fines minimized. Grain size of soils are determined using standard

procedure described in standards such as ASTM.

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Unit Weight, γ

In general, unit weight of soil can be expressed as sttaed in Eqn. (1.2).

Wt

(1.2)

Vt

where, = unit weight, Wt= weight of the soil sample, Vt= volume of the soil sample.

Unit weight, γ is fairly easy to estimate for cohesive soil by trimming a block (or length of a

recovered tube sample) to convenient size, weighting it, and then placing it in a volumetric

jar and measuring the quantity of water required to fill the container. The unit weight is

simply

γ wet

Volume of jar - volume of water to fill jar

The unit weight of the cohesionless samples is very difficult (and costly) to determine.

Where only the unit weight is required, good result can be obtained by recovering a sample

with a piston sampler. With a known volume initially recovered, later disturbance is of no

consequence, and we have

γ wet (1.4)

Initial volume of piston sample

Specific Gravity, Gs

The Specific Gravity of the soil grain is of some value in computing the void ratio when the

unit weight and water content are known. Specific Gravity, Gs is usually subscripted to

identify the quantity; for soil grains, Gs is defined as stated in Eqn. 1.5. Typical values of Gs

for some soils are presented in Table 1.2.

Ws

Vs s

Gs (1.5)

w w

where, Gs= specific gravity, Ws= wt. of solid, Vs= volume of solid, w= unit wt. of water,

s= unit weight of solids

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Table 1.2 Specific gravity of different soils

Soil Gs

Gravel 2.65-2.68

Sand 2.65-2.68

Silt (inorganic) 2.62-2.68

Clay (organic) 2.58-2.65

Clay (inorganic) 2.68-2.75

A value of Gs= 2.67 is commonly used for cohesionless soils and a value of 2.70 for

inorganic clay. Where any uncertainity exists of a reliable value of Gs, one should perform

a test on a minimum of three samples.

Atterberg’s Limits

The behaviour of fine grained soils depends on its mineral composition, the water content,

the degree of saturation and its structure. In particular, the water content has always been

considered an important and reliable indication of the behaviour of cohesive soils since the

beginning of soil mechanics. Swedish soil scientist Atterberg, in the early 1900’s, first

identified that a gradual decrease in water content of a clay soil slurry causes the soil to

pass through four states or conditions (consistency); liquid, plastic, semi-solid and solid.

Liquid state is the condition of a fine grained soil at which the soil will flow on its own

weight, plastic state is that condition at which the soil can be remoulded to any shape

without any development of cracks. Semi-solid is the condition at which the soil can

remoulded but only with the development of cracks. Whereas, at solid state the soil cannot

be remoulded at all; if done the soil specimen would get broken.

Atterberg also identified three limiting water contents, in between the soil states, commonly

known as Atterberg’s limits.

Liquid Limit, LL

The liquid limit (WL or LL), is the water content at the point of transition of the clay sample

from a liquid state to a plastic state, whereby it acquires a certain small shearing strength.

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Plastic Limit, PL

The plastic limit (WP or PL) is the minimum moisture content at which the soil can be

deformed plastically. It can be taken as the smallest water content at which the soil begins

to crumble when rolled out into thin threads, approximately 3 mm in diameter. That is at

plastic limit the soil must gain some minimum stiffness or strength.

Shrinkage Limit, SL

Similarly, the limiting water content between semi-soilid and soilid states is the shrinkage

limit, SL.

Void ratio, e

The ratio of volume of voids, Vv to the volume of solids, Vs in a given volume of material

usually expressed as a decimal is known as void ratio.

Vv

e (1.6)

Vs

Porosity, n

The ratio of volume of voids, Vv to the total volume Vt, expressed as either a decimal or a

percentage is known as poprosity.

Vv

n (1.7)

Vt

The ratio of mass per unit volume is known as unit density. The SI system gives units of

kg/m3 but a preferred usage unit is g/cm3. Often unit density is called “density”.

Degree of saturation, S

The ratio of volume of water, Vw to the volume of solid voids Vv, is known as deegree of

saturation. It is expressed as a percentage but used as a decimal.

Vw

S 100 (%) (1.8)

Vs

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va Air va Air,Wa = 0

vv e Vv n vv

vw Water ww vw vw/w

Ww

vt vt 1.0 vt 1+e

wt 1=

Solid Vs Ws ws/wGs

ws 1.0 1-n

Fig. 1.1 Block diagram showing: (a) weight/volume relationships for a soil mass; (b)

voulme/void relationships; and (c) volume expressed in terms of weight and specific

gravity.

A saturated soil is obtained from beneath the ground water table may have a computed S

of between 90 and 100 percent.

It can be obtained from the block diagram of Fig. 1.1 (b) as follows:

Let, the volume of the solids Vs =1.0 (since values are symbolic anyway). This relation

gives directly that e = Vv from Eq. (1.6). Placing theses value on the left side of the block

diagram (as shown) gives the total volume directly as Vt = 1+e. Now using Eq. (1.7) we

have,

Vv e

n (1.9)

Vt 1 e

n

e (1.10)

1 n

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(2) Relation between dry unit weight , dry and wet unit weight, wet

A useful expression for dry unit weight can be obtained similarly by making reference to the

block diagram of Fig. 1.1(a) (right side). By inspection, we have Wt =Ws + Ww (the air has

negligible weight). From Eq. (1.1), we have Ww = wWs (where w is in decimal form). Also,

Which gives,

wet

dry (1.11)

1 w

A useful relation for the void ratio in terms of S, w, and Gs is obtained by using γw =1.0

g/cm3 as follows:

1. From Eq. (1.5) and referring to the block diagram of Fig. 1.1 (c), obtain

Ww

Gw

Vw w

and because Gw=γw=1.0, the weight of water Ww (in grams) = WwγwGw =Vw (in cm3)

Vw SVv

Ww Se

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4. From Eq. (1.5) obtain the weight of soil solids as

Ws V s w G s

Which for Vs = 1 cm3 gives Ws = Gs

5. From Eq. (1.1) for water content and using above step 3 for Ww and step 4 for Ws,

obtain

Ww Se

w

Ws Gs

w

e Gs (1.12)

S

and when S = 1 (saturated soil), we have, e =wGs

4) Relationship btween dry unit weight, dry, water content, w and specific gravity, Gs

The dry unit weight, dry is often of particular interest. Let us obtained a relationship for it in

terms of water content, w and specific gravity of the soil solids Gs . From Fig 1.1 (c), the

volume of a given mass Vt = 1+e, and with e obtained from Eq. (1.12) we have,

w

Vt 1 Gs

S

Also, in any system of units the weight of the soil solids is

Ws wGs

dry (1.13)

Vt 1 ( w / S )G s

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And for S=100 percent

wGs

dry

1 wG s

wet dry (1 w)

w G s (1 w)

wet (1.14)

1 ( w / S )G s

In the earlier sections we have discussed about the index properties and engineering

properties. Considering engineering properties, strength is the most important property.

Coulomb (1773) was the first to publish about soil friction and earth pressures. He used it

for design of earth fortifications. Coulomb's law of shear strength of soil is as follows:

c tan (1.15)

friction.

It was as late as in 1920 that Terzaghi pointed out the limitations of Coulomb's law and the

importance of pore pressure in mobilizing friction in soils. He modified the above equation

(1.15) as follows: .

where, c' = true cohesion; u= pore water pressure; = effective pressure; ' = true friction.

The prime sign was used to indicate that they refer to values with respect to effective

stresses. This theory has been used since 1920 and is referred to as the Classical Theory

of strength of soils. Measurement of shear strength by the direct shear apparatus has been

in use for the past nearly 200 years.

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The first triaxial compression machine to measure shear strength was constructed by

Casagrande in 1930 at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The story of the

development of this machine since then to this day to increase its useful for routine tests

and research in soils is a fascinating story. Even though many advanced tests can be done

on a modern triaxial eompression machine, the routine tests conducted in most of the

laboratories using these machines are only the following.

Unconsolited-undrained triaxial test (Quick or Q test)

Consolidated undrained triaxial test (Consolidated quick or R test)

Consolidated drained triaxial test (Slow or S test).

Details about the test procedures and interpreatation of test results are avaialble in soil

testing books.

Problem 1.1

A cohesive soil specimen was subjected to laboratory tests to obtain the following data:

Specific gravity, GS= 2.60

To determine the approximate unit weight, a sample weighning 224.0 g was placed in a

500 cm3 container with 382 cm3 of water required to fill the container.

2. The dry unit weight, dry

3. Void ratio, e and porosity, n

4. Degree of saturation, S

5. Dry bulk specific gravity

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2 BEARING CAPACITY OF SHALLOW EFOUNDATIONS

2.1 Introduction

Even though Bossinesq’s formulae to calculate the normal stress and shear stress were

published as early as in 1885, these could not be used for design of foundations, as

exceeding shear strength of soil at a local point cannot lead to the general failure of the

foundation. It was only after 1943, when Terzaghi published his well-known theoretical

methods to calculate the ultimate bearing capacity.

In general, foundations are classified as shallow or deep depending on the ratio of the

depth to width of the foundation. If the depth of the foundation is more than three-five times

its width (shorter dimension) it is called a deep foundation. Terzaghi dealt with the bearing

capacity of shallow foundations. Later research workers like Meyerhof modified Terzaghi's

theory for its application to deep foundations like pile foundations.

Ultimate bearing capacity is the value of the loading intensity that the ground can support

just before total failure. Generally, the term denotes the gross ultimate bearing capacity.

Ultimate bearing capacity is generally represented by the symbol qult.

The net ultimate bearing capacity is the gross ultimate bearing capacity minus weight of

the soil above the foundation to which no factor of safety need to be assigned. Net

ultimate bearing capacity is generally represented by the symbol qnet.

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2.2.3 Safe Bearing Capacity

Safe bearing capacity is the net ultimate bearing capacity divided by the factor of safety

plus the surcharge Df, where is the unit weight of soil and Df is the depth of foundation.

This is generally represented by the symbol qsafe.

Soil pressure for settlement is the value of the net pressure that can be applied on the

foundation for a specified settlement; say 25 mm or 40 mm as may be prescribed by the

code.

Allowable soil pressure or allowable bearing pressure is the maximum loading intensity at

which the soil will not fail in shear, with the specified factor of safety and also will not

undergo more than the specified maximum allowable settlement.

The three principal modes of shear failure under foundation have been described as:

Well defined slip lines are assumed to extend from the edge of the footing to the adjacent

ground surface. This type of failure is characteristic of narrow surface footing or of shallow

depth resting on stronger, denser soils which are relatively incompressible. This type of

failure is described in Fig. 2.1(a).

It is an intermediate failure characterized by well defined slip lines immediately below the

footing but extending only a short distance into the soil mass. This type of failure is

presented in Fig. 2.1 (b).

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3. Punching shear failure

On soils of high compressibility, punching shear failure occurs. There is vertical shear

around the footing perimeter and compression of soil immediately under the footing with

soil on the sides of the footing remaining practically uninvolved. This type of failure is

presented in Fig. 2.1 (c).

(a)

(b)

(c)

Fig. 2.1 Nature of bearing capacity failures in soil: (a) general shear failure; (b) local shear

failure; (c) punching shear failure (redrawn after Vesic, 1973).

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2.3 Terzaghi’s Bearing Capacity Equation and Its Limitations

Terzaghi (1943) was the first to present a comprehensive theory for the evaluation of the

ultimate bearing capacity of rough shallow foundations. According to this theory, a

foundation is shallow if the depth, Df of the foundation is less than or equal to the width of

the foundation. Later investigators, however, have suggested that foundations with Df

equal to 3-5 times the width of the foundation may be defined as shallow foundations.

Terzaghi suggested that for a continuous, or strip, foundation (that is the width-to-length

ratio of the foundation approaches zero), the failure surface in soil at ultimate load may be

assumed to be similar to that shown in Figure 2.1. (Note that this is the case of general

shear failure as defined in Figure: 2.1 (a). The effect of soil above the bottom of the

foundation may also be assumed to be replaced by an equivalent surcharge, q = Df

(where = unit weight of soil). The failure zone under the foundation can be separated into

three parts (Figure 2.1).

2. The radial shear zones ADF and CDE, with the curve DE and DF being arcs of a

logarithmic spiral.

3. Two triangular Rankine passive zones AFH and CEG.

The angles CAD and ACD are assumed to be equal to the soil friction angle, . Note that,

with the replacement of the soil above the bottom of the foundation by an equivalent

surcharge q (= Df), the shear resistance of the soil along the failure surfaces GI and HJ

was neglected.

Fig. 2.2 Bearing capacity failure in soil under a rough rigid continuous footing (soil unit

weight= ; coheion= c and friction angle= ).

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Using the equilibrium analysis. Terzaghi expressed the ultimate bearing capacity for Strip

Foundation in the form described in Eqn. (2.1).

1

qu cN c qN q BN (2.1)

2

where,

c = cohesion of soil

= unit weight of soil

q = Df

Nc, Nq, N = bearing capacity factors that are non dimensional and are only functions of the

soil friction angle, .

e 2 (3 / 4 / 2) tan

N c cot 1 cot ( N q 1) (2.2)

2

2 cos 4 2

e 2( 3 / 4 / 2 ) tan

Nq (2.3)

2 cos 2 45

2

1 K p

N 1 tan (2.4)

2 cos

2

where,

Kp = passive pressure coefficient

The variations of the bearing capacity factors defined by Eqs. (2.2), (2.3) and (2.4) are

given in Table 2.1. Bearing capacity factors for practical use can aslo be obtained from

plots of these values against SPT values as shown in Fig. 2.3.

For estimating the ultimate bearing capacity of square or circular foundations, Eq. (2.1)

may be modified to

Square Foundation

Table 2.1 Terzaghi’s Bearing capacity factors Eqs. (2.2), (2.3) and (2.4)

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Nc Nq Nqa Nc Nq Nqa

0 5.70 1.00 0.00 26 27.09 14.21 9.84

1 6.00 1.10 0.01 27 29.24 15.90 11.60

2 6.30 1.22 0.04 28 31.61 17.81 13.70

3 6.62 1.35 0.06 29 34.24 19.98 16.18

4 6.97 1.49 0.10 30 37.16 22.46 19.13

5 7.34 1.64 0.14 31 40.41 25.28 22.65

6 7.73 1.81 0.20 32 44.04 28.52 26.87

7 8.15 2.00 0.27 33 48.09 32.23 31.94

8 8.60 2.21 0.35 34 52.64 36.50 38.04

9 9.09 2.44 0.44 35 57.75 41.44 45.41

10 9.61 2.69 0.56 36 63.53 47.16 54.36

11 10.16 2.98 0.65 37 70.01 53.80 65.27

12 10.76 3.29 0.85 38 77.50 61.55 78.61

13 11.41 3.63 1.04 39 85.97 70.61 95.03

14 12.11 4.02 1.26 40 95.66 81.27 115.31

15 12.86 4.45 1.52 41 106.81 93.85 140.51

16 13.68 4.92 1.82 42 119.67 108.75 171.99

17 14.60 5.45 2.18 43 134.58 126.50 211.57

18 15.12 6.04 2.59 44 151.95 147.74 261.60

19 16.56 6.60 3.07 45 172.28 173.28 325.34

20 17.69 7.44 3.64 46 196.22 204.19 407.11

21 18.92 8.26 4.31 47 224.55 241.80 512.84

22 20.27 9.19 5.09 48 258.28 287.85 650.67

23 21.75 10.23 6.00 49 298.71 344.63 831.99

24 23.36 11.40 7.08 50 247.50 415.14 1072.80

25 25.13 12.72 8.34

a

From Kumbhojkar (1993)

Fig. 2.3 Values of , Nc, N and Nq from SPT (N) values in cohesionless soils (after Peck,

Hansen and Thornburn).

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Circular Foundation

In Eq. (2.5), B equals the dimension of each side of the foundation; in Eq. (2.6), B equals

the diameter of the foundation.

For foundations that exhibit the local shear failure mode in soils, Terzaghi suggested

modifications to Eqs. (2.1), (2.5), and (2.6) as follows:

2 1

qu cN c qN q BN (2.7)

3 2

Nc, Nq and N are the modified bearing capacity factors. They can be calculated by using

the bearing capacity factor equations (for Nc, Nq and N) by replacing by ’ = tan-1 (2/3 tan

).

2. The soil is homogenious, isotropic, and relatively incompressible.

3. The failure zones do not extend above the footing. The shearing resistance of soil

above the base level as well as friction between soil and sides of the footing are

neglected.

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Terzaghi's bearing capacity equations have now been modified to take into account the

effects of the foundation shape (B/L), depth of embedment (Df), and the load inclination.

Many design engineers, however, still use Terzaghi’s equation, which provides fairly good

results considering the uncertainty of the soil conditions at various sites.

The values of Tarzaghi’s bearing capacity factors for practical use can also be obtained

from plot of these values against SPT values as presented by Peck, Hanson and

Thornburn.

Following are the main factors that affect the bearing capacity of shallow foundation:

1. Size of the foundation

2. Shape of the foundation

3. Depth of foundation

4. Inclination of the load

5. Inclination of the foundation base

6. Inclination of the ground

7. Postion of ground water table

1) Case I

If water table is located so that 0 ≤ D1 ≤ Df, the factor q in the bearing capacity equations

takes the form

Q = effective surcharge = D1 D2 sat w (2.10)

Where,

= unit weight of soil

sat = saturated unit weight of soil

w = unit weight of water

Also, the value of γ in the last term of the equations has to be repeated by γ′ = sat w .

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D1

Case I

Df D2

Case II

Case II

q D f (2.11)

The factor γ in the last term of the bearing capacity equations must be replaced by the

factor

d

(2.12)

B

The preceding modifications are based on the assumption that there is no seepage force in

the soil.

Case III

When the water table is located so that d ≥ B, the water will have no effect on the ultimate

bearing capacity.

Calculating the gross allowable load bearing capacity of shallow foundations requires

application of a factor of safety (FS) to the gross ultimate bearing capacity, or

qu

q all (2.13)

FS

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However, some practicing engineers prefer to use a factor of safety of

Net stress increases on soil (2.14)

FS

The net ultimate bearing capacity is defined as the ultimate pressure per unit area of the

foundation that can be supported by the soil in excess of the pressure caused by the

surrounding soil at the foundation level. If the difference between the unit weight of the

concrete used in the foundation and the unit weight of the soil surrounding is assumed to

be negligible.

qnet ( u ) qu q (2.15)

q= Df

qu q

qall ( net ) (2.16)

FS

The factor of safety as define by Eq. (2.16) may be at least 3 in all cases.

Another type of factor of safety for the bearing capacity of shallow foundations is often

used. It is the factor of safety with respect to shear failure (FSshear). In most cases a value

of FSshear = 1.4 -1.6 is desirable along with a minimum factor of safety of 3-4 against gross

or net ultimate bearing capacity. The following procedure should be used to calculate the

net allowable load for given FSshear.

1. Let c and be the cohesion and the angle of friction, respectively of soil and let FSshear

be the require factor of safety with respect to shair failure. So, development cohesion

and the angle of friction are:

c

cd (2.17)

FS shear

tan

d tan 1 (2.18)

FS shear

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2. The gross allowable bearing capacity can now be calculate according to Eq. (2.1),

(2.5), (2.6), with cd and d as the shear strength parameters of the soil. For example,

the gross allowable bearing capacity of a continuous foundation according to

Terzaghi’s equation is

1

qall cd N c qN q BN (2.19)

2

where, Nc, Nq, Nγ =bearing capacity factor for the friction angle, d

1

qall ( net ) qall q cd N c q( N q 1) BN (2.20)

2

Irrespective of the procedure by which the factor of safety is applied, the magnitude of FS

should depend on the uncertainties and risks involved for the condition encountered.

For a continuous footing in clay, the net ultimate bearing capacity may be expressed in

terms of qu, the unconfined compression strength given by Eq. (2.21),is as follows:

Using a factor of safety of 3 (least value needed for clays) for a strip foundation, we get the

equations

qnet / FS 0.9qu qu

qsafe qu D f (approx) (2.22)

Thus we arrive at the simple thumb rule that safe bearing capacity of a shallow strip

foundation in clay is approximately equal to the unconfined strength of the clay plus the

overburden pressure. We can also relate it to SPT values. For square or circular footing,

from Eq. (2. 5) and (2.6),

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Skemption’s Equation for Bearing Capacity in Clays

The general expression for the ultimate bearing capacity of a strip footing in clay derived

from Eq. (2.1) and as given by Skemption is:

qult cN c

Where,

c= average cohesion for a depth equal to two-third the width of the footing

Nc= bearing capacity factor which varies with Df/B ratio and B/L ratios as shown in Fig. 2.5

In 1951, the following modifications were suggested by Skempton for a rectangle B×L to

incorporate Meyerhof’s theory for strength of overburden pressure:

Accordingly, for a square or round foundation with Df/B ratio greater than 2.5 (i.e. for deep

foundations), Nc= 7.5× 1.2 = 9, as shown in Fig 2.5.

Fig. 2.5 Skempton’s values for bearing capacity factor Nc for cohesive soils varying with

depth/breadth ratios.

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2.7 Bearing Capacity of Shallow Foundation in Sands

In 1974, Peck, Hansen and Thornburn gave a set of curves which can be used for design

footings from SPT values in cohesionless soils for a maximum settlement of 25 mm. From

these curves, it is observed that for Df/B0.5 for breadth of footing equal to or more than 1

m, the allowable bearing pressure is controlled by settlement. For a maximum alloawable

settlement of 25 mm in footings and for width greater than 1.0 m and Df/B0.5, we have the

following:

Thus we obtain a simple rule that a rough approximate allowable bearing capacity in

ton/sqm equal to N, the SPT N value, for allowable settlement.

Fig. 2.6 Allowable bearing pressures for footings in granular soils based on SPT values. It

is taken as the value for an allowable settlement 25 mm for large widths with a factor of

safety of 2 against shear failure for small widths [Peck, Hansen and Thorburn].

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3 DESIGN OF SHALLOW FOUNDATIONS

3.1 Introduction

A foundation is an integral part of the structure. It is the customary practice to regard the

foundation as shallow if the depth of the foundation is less than or equal to the width of the

foundation. This with this ratio greater than 5 are considered as deep foundation. In the

case of deep foundation the depth-width ratio are more than unity. Typicla shallow

foundation is shown in Fig. 3.1.

Ground Surface

Ground

Surface

Df

Df

B B

A footing is an enlargement of the base of a column or wall for the purpose of transmitting

the load to the subsoil at a pressure suited to the properties of the soil. A footing that

supports a single column is known as in individual column footing, an isolated footing or a

spread footing. The footing beneath a wall is known as a wall footing or a continuous

footing. If a footing supports several columns, it is called a combined footing. A particular

form of combined footing commonly used if one of the columns supports an exterior wall is

a cantilever footing. The various types of footing are illustrated in Fig. 3.2.

The stability of a structure depends upon the stability of supporting soil. The two important

factors that are to be considered in this chapter are

1. The foundation must be stable against shear failure of the supporting soil.

2. The foundation must not settle beyond tolerable limits to damage the structure.

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The other factors that require consideration are the location and depth of foundation. In

deciding the location and depth one has to consider the local erosions due to flowing

water, underground defects such as root holes, cavities etc., unconsolidated filled up soil,

ground water level, presence of expansive soils etc.

(a) (b)

(d)

(c)

(e)

Fig. 3.2 Different types of shallow foundations: (a) individual column footing; (b) wall

footing; (c) combined footing (square); (d) combined footing (trapezoidal) and (e) cantilever

footings.

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3.4 Depth of Footings

The minimum depth of foundations are described in codes such as prescribed by IS 1904

is 0.5 m. In clayey soils and especially in case of expansive clays, the depth should be

below a level where there is no variation of moisture with change of seasons. As the

external walls have to act as a protection against insects and rodents, the depth should be

sufficient so as to prevent their access through burrows made under the foundation.

Generally, a minimum depth of 1.0 m is adopted for foundations. In general, even though in

sandy soils and silty clays the depth can be 0.5 to 0.7 m in clay soils, where the variation of

moisture content causes shrinkage, the depth should vary from 1.5 to 3 m depending on

the region. Some structural factors that influence the depth of foundations are discussed in

the following sections.

In general, the load can be assumed to spread into the soil from the edge of footing at 30°

to the horizontal in soil and 60° in rock. (Some take this distribution as 1 vertical to 2

horizontal or 26.6° to 30° to the horizontal in clay and 1 to 1.2 or 40° to 45° in sand). For

estimation of stresses for calculating the settlement of piles, we assume 2 vertical to 1

horizontal. The following rules are to be followed when laying out foundations:

1. When the ground surface slopes downward adjacent to a footing, the sloping surface

should not cut the line of distribution of the load (2 horizontal to 1 vertical) as shown in

Fig. 3.3.

2. In granular, soils, the line joining the lower adjacent edges of the upper and lower

footings shall not have a slope steeper than two horizontal to one vertical (Fig. 3.4).

3. In clayey soil, the line joining the lower adjacent edge of the upper footing and the

upper adjacent edge of the lower footing should not be steeper than 2 horizontal to 1

vertical.

A footing significantly affects the stresses to a depth equal to twice its width. In order to

avoid damage to the existing structure, the areas of stress distribution should not

significantly interfere with each other. Accordingly, we should adhere to the following rules:

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D

Footing

30 to 45

26.6

1

2

(b)

(a)

Upper footing

2H

B 2

1

Footings in clay

in sand

1. Minimum horizontal distance between the two footings should not be less than the

width of the larger footings to avoid damage to the existing structure.

used so that the foundation of the old building is not very much affected by the new

construction.

In any case, extreme care should be taken for supporting the sides of the excavations if the

new footings have to go deeper than the old foundation.

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(3) Footings on surface rocks and sloping rock faces

In places where solid rock is available near the ground level (less than 90 cm in depth), the

rock should be chipped and the concrete of the foundation should be properly keyed into

the rock. In places where the rock surface is on a shallow slope, it is advisable to provide

dowel rods 16 mm dia dowelled to a minimum depth of 225 mm at a spacing of not more

than 1 metre and adequately grouted. In such places, we can also bench the rock surface

to provide a better key to the foundation.

In selecting the type of foundation, one has to consider the functions of the structure and

the load it has to carry, the subsurface condition of the soil, and the cost of the

superstructure.

The design loads also play an important part in the selection of the type of foundation. The

various loads that are likely to be considered are:

(ii) Live loads,

(iii) Wind and earthquake forces,

(iv) Lateral pressure exerted by the foundation earth on the embedded structural

elements, and

(v) The effect of dynamic load.

In addition to the above loads, the loads that are due to the subsoil conditions are also

required to be considered. They are:

(i) Lateral or uplift forces on the foundation elements due to high water table,

(ii) Swelling pressure on the foundations in the expansive soils,

(iii) Heave pressure on the foundations in areas subjected to frost heave, and

(iv) Negative frictional drag on piles where pile foundations are used in highly

compressible soils.

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In mulistorey buildings the design load for foundations should be the same as used for

structural design of columns for example as described in IS 875 (Part 2) 1987 on loads and

buildings and BS 6399 recommended desin to be made for full dead load together with the

reduced live load.

Example 3.1

A square foundation is 5 ft × 5 ft in plan. The soil supporting the foundation has a friction

angle of = 20° and c = 320 lb/ft2.The unit weight of soil γ, is 115 lb/ft2. Determine the

allowable gross load on the foundation with a factor of safety (FS) of 4. Assume that the

depth of the foundation (Df) is 3 ft and that general shear occurs in the soil.

Solution:

qu 1.3cN c qN q 0.4BN

Nc = 17.69

Nq = 7.44

Nγ= 3.64

Thus,

=7359 + 2567+837 = 10763 lb/ft2

q u 10763 2

q all 2691 lb/ft

FS 4

Q = (2691)B2 = (2691)(5×5) =67275 lb

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Example: 3.2

Estimate the size of a square footing of a column carrying a load of 1500 kN in a sand

deposit with average N value of 15. Assume an allowable settlement of 25 mm and depth

of foundation 2 m. Water level is also at foundation level and unit weight of soil is 18

kN/m3.

Solution

Limiting settlement to 25 mm from emperical curves of Fig. 2.6 for N= 15, qsafe= 170 kN/m2

Load= 1500 kN

Size of footing= (1500/170)1/2 = 2.97 m say 3 m

Size of footing 3 m X 3 m.

Problem 3.1

A square foundation (B×B) has to be constructed. Assume that γ = 105 lb/ft3, γsat = 118

lb/ft3, Df =4 ft, and depth of water table, D1 =2 ft. The gross allowable load, Qall, with FS = 3

is 150,000 lb. The field standard penetration resistance Nf, values are follows. Determine

the size of the footing.

5 4

10 6

15 6

20 10

25 5

5 4

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4 DESIGN OF RAFT FOUNDATIONS

4.1 Introduction

A raft or mat foundation is a combined footing that covers the entire area beneath a

structure and supports all the walls and columns. Wherever the building load are so heavy

or the allowable soils pressure so small that individual footings would cover more than

about half the building area, a raft foundation is likely to be more economical than footings.

1. In structures like chimneys, silos, cooling towers, building with basements where

continuous water proofing is needed and in floating foundations where a rigid structure

is needed to reduce settlements.

2. Where differential settlements in structure are to be reduced. As observed by Terzaghi

and Peck, the differential settlement in rafts is only one half that footings of the same

intensity of loading due to the random distribution of compressible zones and also due

to stiffening effect of the raft and building frame. Due to continuity and negative

moments the bending moments produced in rafts tend to be less. Thus an allowable

maximum settlement of 50 mm is usually specified for rafts, whereas for footings only

25 mm is specified for the same allowable differential settlement of 18 mm (3/4 inch)

for both cases.

3. Mats are specified to bridge over pockets of weak spots in moderately weak soil.

4. In situations where individual footings may touch or overlap each other and it is

advisable to excavate the full site instead of the ground under individual footings. (In

such situations, careful analysis should be made as to whether individual footings or

rafts are more economical. In general, where settlements expected are small, individual

strips and footings tend to be cheaper than rafts, which will much more steel to carry

increased shear and bending moments due to continuity).

5. It is very important that when we adopt a raft foundation we should carefully check

whether there are any weak spots below the foundation. As the influence of the

foundation is felt to a depth 1 to 2 times it’s below it, we must be aware that the bulb of

pressure of wide rafts extends to deeper layers than in footings. In situations where

there are soft deposits below hard layers, individual footings should be preferred over

rafts.

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6. It is also a usual practice these days to use mat foundation over piles to reduce

settlements. For this purpose only part of the load is taken by piles. These are called

piled rafts.

Several types of mat foundations are used currently. Some of the common types are

shown schematically in Figure 4.1 and include:

2. Flat plate thickened under columns (Fig. 4.1b).

3. Beams and slab (Fig. 4.1c). The beams run both ways and the columns are located at

the intersection of the beams.

4. Slab with basement walls as a part of the mat (Figure 4.1d). The walls act as stiffeners

for the mat.

Mats may be supported by piles. The piles help in reducing the settlement of a structure

built over highly compressible soil. Where the water table is high, mats are often placed

over piles to control buoyancy.

The performance of a raft depends on the relative rigidity of its three components namely

the superstructure, raft and soil. We should have a clear idea of the meaning of 'rigidity' of

these components since the distribution of contact pressures depends on the relative

rigidity of the foundation with respect to the soil. Structures like a silo, chimney or a multi-

storeyed concrete framed structure are rigid. On the other hand, a structural system

supporting a gantry girder is flexible (Fig. 4.2). It is very important that we should match the

rigidity of the foundation with that of the superstructure. The following are the possible

combinations:

1. Rigid superstructure with rigid foundation: As rigid superstructure does not allow

differential settlement this is a good match.

2. Rigid superstructure with flexible foundation: As flexible foundation can produce large

deflections, this is not a good match.

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3. Flexible superstructure with rigid foundation: This is acceptable but may not be

necessary.

4. Flexible superstructure with flexible foundation: This is also acceptable.

(a) (b)

(c) (d)

Fig. 4.1 Different types of raft foundations: (a) plat flate; (b) flat plate thickened under column;

(c) beams and slab (slab with basement wall); and (d) slab with basement wall.

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Trolley

Raft Raft

(a) (b)

Fig. 4.2 Example of rigid and flexible superstructure: (a) chimney; (b) gantry.

There are many case histories where mismatching of foundation and superstructure has

led to failures. For example, a rigid silo supported on large size columns on a flexible

foundation can crack badly due to mismatch, as the differential settlement in the flexible

raft cannot be tolerated by the rigid columns. This will lead to excessive cracking of the

columns. There are also many cases of failure of steel oil tanks installed on rigid concrete

rafts on soft soils due to mismatch with the foundation.

Designs in clay cannot be based on calculation of stresses only but should be based on

settlement forecast and the estimated maximum curvature to which the raft will be

subjected to. The selection of the thickness of the slab and the amount of reinforcements

to be used should be carefully made so that the raft does not crack up during the

deformations due to settlement. The curvature in which the slab will bend consequent to

settlement as well as the bending moment produced can be estimated with reference to

Fig. 4.3.

(2R - ) = L2/4 (where L = total span)

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Assuming that is small,

L2 1 8

2 R or 2

4 R L

As in bending,

M E f El 8EI

,M 2

I R y R L

The stress (f) is as follows:

M 8EI t

f , where t = thickness

Z L2 2 I

Thus,

4 Et Et

f 2

as L2 / 8 R (4.1)

L 2R

We should note that if the settlement is of the same order as the thickness of the plate, the

thin plate theory will not be adequate. In the classical theory of bending of plates, plates

are divided into four groups:

(i) Thin plate with small deflection;

(ii) Thin plates with large deflections;

(iii) Membranes; and

(iv) Thick plates.

In large deflection of thin plates (deflection more than half of its thickness) appreciable

tensile stresses due to membrane action will be present in the plate. This can cause

extensive cracking in concrete.

As there is no contribution from the friction component of the soil, the safe bearing can be

calculated for cohesive soils as follows:

If Df/B ratios are large, we can apply Skempton's value for Nc as shown in Fig. 2.5 and Eq.

(2.24) of Chapter 2. (Normally, Df/B of raft foundation is not very large as in the case of

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R

L

pile foundations where we can assume Nc = 9). As Nq = 1 for clays and qNq is the

overburden pressure, which is a positive quantity that does not require a factor of safety to

be applied, the safe load qb can be also calculated from the following equation:

cN c

FS (4.3)

qb D f

where, qb is the gross load to be applied on the foundation.

(i) According to Eqn. (4.3), the factor of safety is very large for rafts established at such

depth that Df is nearly equal to qb. When these terms are equal the raft is said to be a fully

compensated foundation. The theoretical factor of safety against failure of the sub soil

under this circumstance is infinite.

(ii) In the case of rafts on weak soils, the dead load and the probable live loads should be

very accurately estimated as the total loads have a great influence on a weak soil as

compared to soils with good bearing capacity.

(iii) For practical purposes, it is more pertinent to assume that the allowable bearing

capacity in rafts in clay soil is the same as for footings and then give correction for Df/B the

depth ratio.

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4.5 Allowable Soil Pressure for Rafts in Cohesionless Soils

The following are some of the considerations in the selection of allowable soil pressures in

cohesionless soils. The denseness of a sand deposit is reflected by the SPT value. N = 15

corresponds to the critical void ratio so that SPT value range 10 to 30 corresponds to

medium dense sand. A value below 10 indicates that the sand is loose.

The settlement of footings in sand as related to SPT (N) value is discussed is valid for rafts

also. Because of the large size of rafts, the bearing capacity against shear failure in

unyielding sand is very large. Hence, bearing capacity will be decided on allowable

settlement. Terzaghi has shown from field observations that in sands, the differential

settlement of rafts is only one half of that of a footing foundation for the same pressure. We

have seen that if a set of footings in a building is designed for a maximum settlement of the

footing of 25 mm (one inch) the differential settlement will be 18 mm (3/4 inch). Hence, if

we design a raft for 25 mm the differential settlement will be only 9 mm only. The maximum

settlement of a raft and a large footing will be the same as can be seen from Fig. 2.6.

Hence, larger pressures of the order of twice that are assigned for footings are allowed for

rafts in sands for the same differential settlement. Experience in the field has also

confirmed the validity of this assumption. Accordingly, we can assume the following

empirical rule for safe bearing capacity of rafts in sands.

Assuming Terzaghi's expression for bearing capacities and settlements based on SPT

values, we get the following expressions for allowable pressures for rafts in sands in kN/m2

for a given value of settlement. (Note: These settlement rules are not applicable to clays.)

1. For B> 4 m and for settlement of 1 mm, we get the allowable pressure for footings as:

The pressure for any given settlement can be worked out. For example, if 50 mm

settlement is specified, then

2. Based on shear failure and assuming FS = 3, the safe bearing capacity will be as

follows:

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q safe

1

18

6(100 N 2 ) D f Rq 2 N 2 BR y (4.6)

Here, Rq, R, Rd are the correction factors for water level, for unit weight and for depth of

foundation, respectively. The value of the depth Df should not be more than 4 m.

(i) Same correction factors for depth of ground water table and depth of foundation for

shallow foundation can be applied fo raft foundation.

(ii) If SPT value (after correction) is 5 or less than 5, than the sand will be loose and needs

consolidation. Special care should be taken when constructing in such sites.

(iii) Load on the foundation is equal to the sum of dead load and live load.

Net pressure (qnet) in excess of the pressure at base in an excavated raft bed of depth Df is

given by:

W

q net D f (4.7)

A

where, W = total load

A = area of raft

Df = depth of foundation

= unit weight of soil

The following thumb rule can also be used in practice. For allowable bearing pressure in

sands with reference to settlement. For differential settlement of 18 mm safe bearing

capacity in kN/m2 is as follows:

For rafts = 21.0N ( = 50 mm and = 18 mm) (4.8)

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4.6 Illustrative Examples

Example: 4.1

Determine the safe bearing capacity of a raft in sand of unit weight 20 kN/m3 with an

average corrected SPT value of 18. Assume the depth of the foundation is 1.5 m and the

breadth is 6 m. A maximum settlement of 40 mm can be allowed for the raft. Assume water

level is at 3 m below ground level.

Solution:

qsafe

1

18

6100 N 2 DRq 2 N 2 BRr

z 1.5

Rq = 1 and R 0.51 = 0 .51 0.625

B 6

qsafe

1

18

6100 18 2 1.5 2 18 2 6 0.625 347 kN/m2

Df 1.5

0.25

B 6

Allowable pressure= 200 kN/m2

For 40 mm settlement for footing

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40 200 40

q 40 q 25 320 kN/m2

25 25

Step 2: Recommendations

Expected settlement = 40mm

Expected differential settlement = ½ that of footing

1 18 40

14.4 mm (Ans)

2 25

Example 4.2

Estimate the allowable bearing capacity of a 12 m x 16 m raft in clay, the loading on the

raft due to dead and live loads being 50 kN/m2. The raft is located at 1.5 m below G.L. and

the depth of clay extends to a depth of 16 m below the foundation; the material below that

depth being dense sand. The average SPT value of the clay is 6 m and the ground water

level is at the level of the foundation. Assuming unit weight of soil as 18 kN/m3 and that

cc/(1+e0) =0.03, estimate the safe bearing capacity and the expected settlement of the raft.

Solution:

= 50 – (18*1.5) = 23 kN/m2

qult = cNc + Df (Skempton’s formula)

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Nc = 5(1+0.2B/L)(1+0.2Df/B)

= 5(1+0.214/18)(1+0.215/14) = 5.8

Cohesion, c= 60/2= 30 kN/m2

Cc p p

H log 0

1 e0 p0

23 * 12 *16

∆p 9.2 kN/m2

12 816 8

91 9.2

The expected total settlement, 0.03 * 16 * log 1000 45 mm (Ans)

91

[Note: The details of the settement calculation are available in other modules].

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5 LOAD CARRYING CAPACITY OF PILES BY STATIC FORMULAE

5.1 Introduction

Piles are structural members used to transmit surface loads to deeper layers. This chapter

is devoted to the theoretical estimation of the ultimate capacity of piles from properties of

the soil strata where the piles are installed. However, field loading tests should be always

carried out whenever possible especially in large projects to check theoretical values

against actual field capacities. These foundations are classified as deep foundations and

are used for one or more of the following purposes:

1. To carry loads which are too heavy to be supported by a shallow foundation. The loads

are to be transferred to deeper, stronger and less compressible strata or over a larger

depth of the foundation soil as in foundations of tall buildings.

2. To carry part of the load to deeper soil for reducing the settlement as in piled raft

foundations.

3. To carry horizontal loads as in bridge abutments or retaining walls and also to increase

the stability of tall buildings. Inclined piles are also used to carry inclined loads with

horizontal force components.

4. To withstand uplift forces in foundations as in expansive soils and floating foundations.

5. To avoid loss of support by scour as in bridges.

6. To produce large differential settlement in situations where are large variations of

column loads.

7. To compact foundation material such as loose sands.

Concrete piles are most commonly used in many countries such as India while steel piles

are popular in the U.S.A. Concrete piles are commonly classified on the basis of various

criteria as follows.

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Piles may be classified on the basis of their size (diameter). Piles larger than 600 mm in

diameter are called large diameter piles. In India, piles larger than one meter in diameter

are commonly used for bridges. Sizes 300 to 600 mm are called normal or small diameter

piles. Piles of 150 to 250 mm in diameter are called mini piles while those below 150 mm

diameter are classified as micro piles.

On the basis of the method of installation, piles can also classified as driven cast in-situ,

bored cast in-situ, precast driven or as precast piles driven in pre-bored holes.

Piles are classified as follows depending on their action (that is, the purpose they are

intended to serve).

Non-displacement piles (bored piles)

Small displacement piles (driven steel H piles)

The final choice of the type of pile for any job is dictated by the subsurface conditions, the

driving characteristics of the piles, the probable performance of the foundations, and also

by economy. Economic comparisons should be based on the cost of the entire foundation

instead of on the cost of piles alone. For example, the cost of twelve 20-ton wood piles

might be less than that of four 60-ton concrete files, but the larger pile cap required to

transfer the column load to the wood piles might increase the sot of the wood-pile

foundation above that of the concreted-pile foundation.

The following are some of the important factors that affect the choice between precast

driven, driven cast in-situ, and bored cast in-situ piles:

1. Disturbance of nearby old structures. Vibrations are caused during pile driving.

2. Ground heave and pile heave.

3. Sensitivity of soil strata. If soil is sensitive, it breaks up during pile driving.

4. Length and size of pile. Precast RC driven piles are small in size and are usually of

length up to 16 m and size less than 550 mm. Bored piles can be taken very deep

provided they are reasonably large. They can also be of large diameters.

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5. Ground surface condition before operations. For any pile driving operation, the

equipment should be able to move freely to and fro at the site.

6. Ground surface condition after piling. The finishing level of bored cast in-place piles

can be easily controlled even below ground level. With precast driven piles (with

varying depth of driving) piles will be projecting above the ground after the set is

reached.

7. Time taken for piling. This is a very important factor in many projects. Driven precast

and cast in-situ piles, if properly organised, can be more quickly executed than bored

cast in-place piles. However, if ground heave is expected, driven cast in-place piles will

pose problems involving the integrity of the pile.

8. Loss of ground and over-break. With sandy fills and very soft silty clay layers, loss of

ground should be expected with driven piles due to consolidation.

9. Loss of bearing at pile tip. In bored cast in-place piles, the success in washing the base

of the pile depends on the availability of good equipment, workmen and experienced

contractors.

10. Difficulty in pulling out casing. In pure sand deposits while using driven cast in-place

piles it will be difficult to pull out the casing after concreting. Defects like necking occur

in such cases.

11. Probability of negative skin friction. It is claimed that this can be reduced in precast

piles by bituminous coatings. However, it may also be said that because of larger

disturbances produced while driving, driven piles produce more negative friction.

12. Possibility of pile damage during driving. If the driving is hard, precast driven piles tend

to get damaged in the body due to driving stresses and at head due to inadequacy of

equipment or lack of strength at the top. These should be carefully looked into.

At present, the following three methods are used to estimate the capacity of piles.

1. The static method based on soil properties for all types of piles.

2. The dynamic method using pile driving formulae based on the resistance observed in

the field.

3. The wave equation method for driven pile.

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5.4.1 Piles in Granular Soils

The ultimate bearing capacity, Qu, of pile in granular soils is given in IS 2911 by the

following formula:

n

(5.1)

1

End bearing resistance = small (Nγ effect) + very large (Nγ effect) + friction

where,

Ap = cross-sectional area of the pile

D = stem diameter of pile

γ = unit weight of soil

Nγ = bearing capacity factor taken for general shear-(IS 6403) Fig. 5.1

Nq =berezantsev’s bearing capacity factor- Fig. 5.1 (IS 2911)

PD = effective overburdened pressure(critical depth taken as 15D for Ф ≤ 30° and

20D for Ф > 40°

K1 = coefficient of earth pressure (Tables 5.1, 5.2, 5.3 can be used)

PD1 = effective overburdened pressure of corresponding layer (This effect is

controlled by prescribing limiting function).

δ = angle of wall friction usually taken as 3/4Ф of soil.

As = surface area of pile.

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Fig. 5.1 Bearing capacity factor Nq according to various investigators.

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Fig. 5.3 IS 2911 recommendation for Nq values for varying values.

The first term and the last term are usually small and can be neglected in Eq. (5.1).

n

Qult Ap PD N q K1PD1 tan (5.2)

1

Table 5.1 Brons values for K and δ for different pile materials in granular soils

Dense; Ф≥ 40° Loose; Ф ≤ 25° δ

Concrete 2.0 1.0 0.75 Ф

Steel 1.0 0.5 20°

Timber 2.5 1.5 0.75 Ф

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Table 5.2 Variable of base and shaft resistance of concrete piles with method of

installation in granular soils

K Values Nq Values

Soil density Critical depth

Pre-cast Cast-in- Pre-cast driven Cast-in-situ

(IS 2911) ratio of driven

driven pile situ piles pile piles

Following corrections are to be made

in for calculation of Nq

Dense 20 2.0 1.5

1. For driven cast-in-situ pile, Ф is

(Ф > 40°)

unchanged.

2. For driven precast piles, Ф is

Medium (Intermediate) 1.5 1.3 changed to (Ф+40)/2.

3. For bored cast-in-situ piles if the

bottom is cleaned throughly by

continuous mud circulation, Ф is

unchanged.

Loose

15 1.0 1.0 4. For bored cast-in-situ piles where

Ф≤25°to 30° continuous mud circulation is not

used, Ф is reduced by 3 to 5

degrees.

Driven large displacement piles (concrete piles) 1 to 2

Driven small displacement piles (steel H piles) 0.75 to 1.75

Bored cast in-situ piles 0.70 to 1.0

Jetted piles 0.50 to 0.70

*Ko = (1 - sin) = coefficient of earth pressure at rest

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5.4.2 Piles in Cohesive Soils

The ultimate bearing capacity, Qu of piles in soils is given by the following formula (IS 2911

part 1 Sec. 3):

n

Qu AP N c C p i ci Asi (5.3)

i 1

where,

N c = bearing capacity factor in clays

i = adhesion factor

ci = average cohesion of the ith layer on the side of the pile

It should be remembered that the average cohesion at pile toe can be different from the

value of the cohesion along the pile. The differences between precast driven and cast-in-

situ piles can be accounted for by multiplying value by a factor equal to 0.8 for cast-in-

situ piles (according to IS 2911). The adhesion factor recommended by some other

investgators are peented in Figure 5.4.

Fig. 5.4 Adhesion factors for clays for driven piles: (a) according to Tomlimson; (b)

according to Flaate.

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Adhesion Factor

Bowels has given three methods (α, β, γ methods) to estimate skin friction. As it is difficult

to estimate the various quantities involved, simple methods of estimation are considered

good enough for a fair estimation of skin friction.

The shaft resistance of piles in clay depends on the cohesion of the clay and its adhesion

factor α, the adhesion being αc. Soft clays have a better adhesion factor than hard or brittle

clays. IS recommends the following methods to estimate the adhesion factor α for driven

piles.

The values of α recommended by IS 2911 Part I Section 3 Clause B2 for driven piles for

various soils are given in Table 5.4.

Method 2: From field c/σv vales (IS 2911 Part 1 Sec. 2 Bored piles)

IS 2911 has introduced Tomlinson’s recommendation for all factor to be computed from

field values of c/σv (cohesion-vertical pressure ratio, represented as ψ) as follows. For

normally consolidated clays, the value of can c/σv be assumed to range from 0.2 to 0.3, so

that (c/σv )1/2 can be assumed to have a mean value of 0.5. If the value of c/σv (= ψ) is

greater than 0.5, the clay can be assumed to be overconsolidated.

Table 5.4 Adhesion factor for clays, for precast driven piles in clays

2 2

of clays N (kN/m ) (kg/cm ) Driven Bored

<4 Soft to very 1 to 25 0.01-0.25 >1.0

Reduce the

soft

driven

4 to 8 Medium stiff 25 to 50 0.25-0.50 0.70-0.40

values by

8 to 15 Stiff 50 to 100 0.50-1.0 0.40-0.30

factor 0.8

≥15 Stiff to hard ≥100 >1.0 0.30-0.25

Notes:

1. The value of c for clays is N/15 to N/20 kg/cm2 (approximately)as derived from N values.

2. The value of α shall be limited to 0.5 for sensitive clays.

3. The value of α may be more than 0.7 in clays overlain by sand.

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On the basis of the above assumption, the following α values are recommended by IS

2911 (Sec. 2)

0.5

If ψ ≤ 1, then 0.5 0.5 , but < 1 (5.4)

c / v 1/ 2

If ψ >1, then 0.5 0.25 , but < 1and > 0.5 (5.5)

Tomlimson has explained that research in offshore piles has shown that the two important

factors that influence adhesion in heavily loaded piles driven to deep penetration in clays

are following:

1. The overconsolidation ratio of the soil as already explained.

2. The slenderness or aspect ratio (also called L/B ratio)

F = 1 for L/B ≤ 50

F = 0.7 for L/B ≥ 120

Intermediate values can be assumed to be linear. The following formula will give the

adhesion between shaft of pile and clay in terms of two factors, α and F.

Using the fundamental soil properties with such soils, it is customary to use one of the

following methods:

Method 1: If the soil has small values of treat it as purely cohesive soil. Similarly, if the

cohesion is small and is large than treat the soil being cohesionless.

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Method 2: Where the soil has large values of both c and (as for a true c- soil), we should

use the conservative Terzaghi’s bearing capacity factor to determine the load carrying

capacity .This formula is expressed as follows.

Qb AP cN c vb N q 0.5DN As c K v tan (5.7)

where,

Nc, Nq, Nγ = Terzaghi’s bearing capacity factors

σvb, σv = Effective overburden pressure of base and pile shaft, irrespective of the

critical depth.

Piles which are used in large towers and chimneys or in dry docks can go in tension under

uplift loads and overturning moments. This subject is fully described by Tomlinson [9].

Similarly, expansion of top layers of expansive soils like black cotton soils can produce

uplift of piles. The uplift resistance of straight sided friction piles are calculated in the same

way as explained for compression piles when the L/d ratio is greater than 5. (Bearing

resistance of the pile is absent when the pile is in pure tension). In the case of shorter

lengths (when L/d < 5) there is a likelihood of reduction of the frictional resistance. A factor

of safety of 3 is recommended for tensile strength. It should also be noted that generally

the movement necessary to mobilise the skin friction and hence, tension in piles is small.

Tension piles for towers can be constructed with enlargement of the base in which case

the strength of a part of the soil above the base of the pile can also be made to resist the

uplift forces as in the case of under reamed piles. Drilled in rock anchors are also

commonly used to resist tension forces and details of their design are explained in

Tomlimson. Past experience shows that in sands the resistance in tension is only 2/3 that

of skin friction value in compression. In clays they develop more or less the same skin

friction as in compression. As a rule, we may assume that the ultimate tension capacity of

a friction pile is two-thirds of its ultimate skin friction capacity in compression.

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5.6 Negative Skin Friction

In conditions where the soil can move down relative to the pile, instead of the pile going

down because of the loading, the soil tends to 'hang on to the pile' and transfer its load

also on to the pile. Here, the skin friction between soil and pile increases the load on the

pile and hence this type of friction is called negative skin friction.

Some of the site conditions where negative skin friction can occur are given below.

1. When the pile is installed in a fill, which will undergo consolidation (Fig. 5.5).

2. In a soil which will be disturbed or remoulded thoroughly during the pile installation.

3. In piles installed in soft clay with surcharge loading on it.

4. In soils where lowering or variation of ground water can occur, thus leading to

significant settlement of soil strata around the pile.

5. In cases where piles are driven through a strata of soft clay into firmer soils and the soft

clay tends to settle relative to the pile.

6. In piles in a clay stratum which undergoes shrinkage settlement.

As negative skin friction is due to consolidation, it takes place slowly and increases with

time. Hence, its effects are not felt in pile load tests.

It appears that even a small relative movement between pile and soil around the pile (of

the order of 10 mm), mobilizes full negative skin friction. However, we should realize the

difference between the following two conditions that can occur in the field.

Case 1. In the first case, the pile may rest on a hard stratum without any possible

downward movement of the pile but the soil around it settles. Here full negative friction

acts.

Case 2. In the second case, the pile rests on comparatively compressible strata so that

the pile settles to the same extent with the surrounding soil. In this case settlement of the

pile is large; the soil around the pile will have to pull the pile up in ‘positive friction’. Hence,

judgment must be used when estimating these forces.

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The following procedure can be used for estimation of negative friction in single pile.

Method 2: For negative friction developed by consolidation of soil with piles, the following

expression is applicable.

fs-ve = 0

Where,

fs-ve = negative friction per unit area

0 = effective overburden pressure

= the reduction factor. Meyerhof recommends values depending on length of piles,

0.3, 0.2, 0.2 for length 15, 40, 60 meters of pile lengths, respectively.

QN = total negative skin friction on the pile per unit length

A si = perimeter area

In places where we expect negative skin friction, the usual practice is to design piles for the

following condition depending on the severity of the negative skin friction.

This approach is very conservative as in the calculation of negative skin friction we are

calculating the maximum negative friction and putting a safety factor for it.

This second procedure is the one generally used. It should be used after a careful

assessment of the soil conditions and the importance of the structure.

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5.6.2 Method of Mitigating Negative Skin Friction

1. Coat the surface of the precast pile with thick coat of special bituminous paint which

have been proved to reduce skin friction as much as 90 per cent of the theoretical

value.

2. Drive the piles inside a casing. In the top negative friction height, the space between

pile and casing is filled with a viscous material and the casing is withdrawn after

installing the pile.

3. In Holland they have successfully experimented with precast concrete piles with shafts

of smaller cross sectional area along its length as compared with the base. This

solution is possible with bearing piles only where we do not depend on the shaft

resistance.

Q

negative skin friction

R ecent fill

Probable zone of

Soft

com pressive

stratum

H ard

bearing

stratum

Qt

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5.7 Comparison of Capacities of Driven and Bored Piles

When the total capacity of a pile is due to both bearing and side resistance, driven piles

can be expected to give much higher capacity than bored piles, especially in cohesionless

soils. However, there are bearing piles to bear on very farm strata like rock or very dense

sand at great depths, bored piles can be expected to have better load resistance than

driven piles. However, it is very important that in bored piles the base should be very

carefully cleaned before concreting. Otherwise, debris collected at the bottom will enable

only the frictional part of the resistance of the pile to be mobilized at the allowable

settlement stipulated in the pile test.

Example 5.1

Estimate the ultimate loads bearing capacity of a precast driven pile 500 × 500 mm with 25

mm chamfer at the corners in section and 15 m long develop in strata with the following

soil data. Assume submerged conditions.

(m) Value(kg/cm2)

1 0 to 5 Clay fill 4 16

2 5 to 11 Medium sand 20 120

3 11 to 13 Medium sand 25 150

4 13 to 15 Medium sand 35 200

5 Beyond 15 Medium sand 50 300

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Solution:

Step 1: Determination soil properties from SPT values

Layer Thickness Type N c, values

(m)

1 5 Clay 4 c=0.2kg/cm2

2 6 Sand 20 = 33°

3 2 Sand 25 = 35°

4 2 Sand 35 = 37°

5 - Sand 50 = 41°

L 15

30 ;> Critical depth 20D = 10 m

D 0.5

Assume submerged wt. of soil = 10 kN/m3 = 1 t/ m3

Max. effective overburdened, PD =10t (from friction)

AP = (0.5)2 -2(0.025)2 = 0.24875 m2

Perimeter = 4 ×0.5 = 2 m

Thickness = 5 m

qsi Ai c = - (2 ×5) ×2 = - 20 tons (-ve friction)

As the layer is at the top and as the pile is precast we can reduce this drag by bituminous

coatings.

K= 1.5; Assume δ = (3/4)

The following values can be used.

(Note: K for driven pies as assumed > K for bored piles.)

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Layer Thickness Mean depth ° δ= ¾

(m) (PD)

2 6 8 33° 25

3 2 12 35° 26

4 2 14 37° 27

5 ─ ─ 41°

(Assume K =1.5 and γ =1 t/m2

qs1 = 1.5 × 8 × tan25° = 5.59 t/m2

qs2 = 1.5 × 12 × tan26° = 8.77 t/m2

qs3 = 1.5 × 14 × tan27° = 10.77 t/m2

Allowable maximum = 11 t/ m2 (All values < 11 t/ m2)

Qs = 5.59(2×6) + 8.77 (2×2) + (10.77×2×2) = 145 t

Qb PD N q

37 41

For Nq; =39°

2

N q =120 and PD N q =1200

Qb = 0.249 [0.5 ×0.5 ×1 ×142) + (10 × 120)] – W

=0.249(35.5 + 1200) ≈ 1200 t/ m2 (see below)

(First term = 8.8 t; and the wt. of the pile = (0.5)2 × 15 × 2.5 =9.3t

-negative first and last term)

Limiting PD N q to 1100 t/ m2, which is <1200 t/ m2,

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Step 6: Total bearing capacity

Qu

Qallowable - Negative skin friction

F .S

418

= 20 =147 tons

2.5

Example 5.2

The soil profile at the site for a multistory building is as follows. Determine the capacities of

400 mm, 760 mm and 900 mm diameter bored piles extending to a depth of 29 m. Assume

the weight of soil as 1800 kg/cm2 and that submergence can occur.

0-5 Stiff clay 0.5 -

5-21 Soft clay 0.1 -

21-25 Stiff clay 0.5 -

25-29 Medium sand - 30°

Below 29 Weathered rock - 38°

Calculation:

Neglecting 1st and last term, we got Qb AP PD N q

Where, PD =effective overburdened pressure

Submerged weight of soil, =0.8 t/ m3

Assume critical depth = 20D = hc

Assuming maximum allowable end resistance of 1100 t/m2 for

Bored pile critical diameter of pile be D; Nq =100

qb 20 D 0.8 100 = 1100 t/m2

Critical D = 0.688 or 688 mm dia.

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For dia above 700 mm, limit qb 1100 t/ m2

1. Clay (-0.5m). It can produce negative skin friction.

qs1 = (0.5× 5) = 2.5 t/ m2

qs1 = (D × 5)2.5 = - 39.25 D tons

2. Clay (5-21). It can produce negative skin friction

qs2 = (1× 1) = 1 t/ m2

qs2 = (D × 16)2.5 = - 50 D tons

3. Clay (21-25) – no further consolidation (no drag)

qs3 = (0.5× 5) = 2.5 t/ m2

qs3 = (D × 4)2.5 = - 31.4 D tons

4. Sand (24- 29) m sand ; =30° at 27 depth.

For K use Table 9.2; IS 2911 value = 1

δ = 0.75 × 30 = 22.5° (wall friction)

tan δ = 0.41; mean depth = 27 m; use K/Ko = 1

KPD tan 1 (0.8 27)0.41 = 8.8 t/m2

(8.8 is less than 11 t/m2, max allowed

Qs 4 (D 4)8.8 110 D

Alternate method for K in above

K o 1 sin 1 sin 30 0.5

K = 1 × 0.5 = 0.5 only

(-39D -50D) = -89D + ve

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Step 4: Calculate end bearing for different diameters

20D = 8 m depth of pile 29 m, L/D = 20

Hence Nq = 100

PD = 8×0.8 = 6.4 t/m2 ; qb = 6.4×100 = 640 t/m2 ;

640<max, allowable 1100 t/m2

0.4 2

Qb 640 80.3 tons

4

Qs 141D 141 0.4 56t and Qb Qs 136t

Qs 89 D 89 0.4 35t

Qb = 136 t and -35 t (negative friction)

Q structural D 2 / 4 0.25 f ck

20D = 20× 0.76 = 15.2m < 29 m (depth)

PD 15.2 0.8 12 ; qb 12 100 1200

As it is >1100, the allowable value, use 1100 only

0.762

Qb 1100 498 tons

4

Qs 141D 141 0.76 107t

Qs 89 D 89 0.76 67t

Qu = 498+107= +605t and - 67t

Qst = 226 tons

Similar calculation will yield.

Qu = +826 and – 80 tons (negative drag)

Qst = 317 tons (structural capacity)

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Step 5: Tabulate the result

Pile dia (mm) Qst (ton) Qu (ton) Qu /2.5 (ton) Q-ve (ton) Qsafe (ton)

400 62 136 54 -35 19

760 226 605 242 -67 159

900 317 826 330 -80 237

If we calculate ton carried per cubic meter of pile, we get the following:

(a) For 400 mm dia pile,

19 4

Tonnage per m3 5.21 t/c.m

0.42 29

(b) For 760 mm dia pile,

159 4

Tonnage per m3 12.0 t/c.m

0.762 29

(c) For 900 mm dia pile,

237 4

Tonnage per m3 12.8 t/c.m

0.92 29

Thus, larger diameter piles becomes more economical and optimum diameter can be

found for use.

Problem 5.1

A reinforced concrete structure 100 ft square is to be supported by a raft with its base 16 ft

below the surrounding ground surface. The subsoil consists of sand to great depth. Five

borings have been made at the site; the average N-values, corrected for the influence of

the overburden pressure, are respectively 36, 30, 32, 35 and 33. The average unit weight

of the sand is 114 lb/ft3. While test-boring was in progress, the water level was at a depth

of 5 ft. During construction the water level will be lowered to 20 ft, but upon completion of

the structure the level will return to its original position. What total load, including the weight

of raft, structure, and contents, may be supported at a settlement not to exceed 2 in; that

is, at a differential settlement not to exceed ¾ in?

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6 SELECTION OF FOUNDATION TYPE AND BASIS FOR DESIGN

In choosing the type of foundation, the engineer must perform five successive steps:

and the loads to be transmitted to the foundations.

2) Determine the subsurface conditions in a general way.

3) Consider briefly each of the customary types of foundation to judge whether they

could be constructed under the existing conditions, whether they would probably be

capable of carrying the required loads, and whether they might experience

detrimental settlements. Eliminate, in this preliminary way, obviously unsuitable

types.

4) Make more detailed studies and even tentative designs of the most promising

types. These studies may require additional information concerning the load and

subsurface conditions and generally must be carried far enough to determine the

approximate size of footings or piers or the approximate length and number of piles

required. It may also be necessary to make more refined estimates of settlement in

order to predict the behavior of the structure.

5) Prepare an estimate of the cost of each promising type of foundation, and choose

the type that represents the most acceptable compromise between performance

and cost.

Steps 3 and 4 require a knowledge of the probable behavior of each type of foundation for

each type of subsurface condition.

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6.2 Bearing Capacity and Settlement

On the assumption that it is practicable to construct a given type of foundation under the

conditions prevailing at a site, the probable performance of the foundation must be judged

with respect to two types of unsatisfactory behavior. On the one hand, the entire foundation

or any of the elements of which it is composed may break into the ground because the soil

or rock is incapable of supporting the load without failure. On the other hand, the

supporting soil or rock may not fail, but the settlement of the structure may be so treat or so

uneven that the superstructure may become cracked and damaged. Misbehavior of the

first type is related to the strength of the supporting soil or rock and is known as a bearing-

capacity failure. That of the second is associated with the stress-deformation

characteristics of the soil or rock, and is known as detrimental settlement. In reality the two

types of unsatisfactory behavior are often so closely related that the distinction is entirely

arbitrary. For example, a footing on loose sand settles by greater and greater increments,

out of proportion to the increases in load, until even the settlements under very small

increments are intolerable; yet no outright plunging of the footing into the ground occurs. In

other instances the distinction is clear; a footing on stiff clay underlain by a layer of soft

clay may be entirely safe against breaking into the ground, but the settlement due to

consolidation of the soft clay may be excessive. In many practical problems the two types

of unsatisfactory behavior can be investigated separately, as if they had independent

causes. Such separation considerably simplifies the engineer’s approach.

The selection of the loads on which the design of a foundation is to be based influences

not only the economy but sometimes even the type of the foundation. Moreover, the soil

conditions themselves have a bearing on the loads that should be considered.

Every foundation unit should be capable of supporting, with a reasonable margin of safety,

the maximum load to which it is ever likely to be subjected, even if this load may act only

briefly or once in the lifetime of the structure. If an overhead or a misjudgment of the soil

conditions would result merely in an excessive increase in settlement but not an outright

failure of the subsoil, a smaller factor of safety might be justified than if the overload would

lead to a sudden and catastrophic bearing-capacity failure.

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The maximum load and corresponding soil pressure or pile loads are often specified by

building codes; these requirements are legal restraints on the design that must be satisfied.

However, since they may not take into account all eventualities, the foundation engineer

must assure himself that the foundations are safe, even though they satisfy the code.

Furthermore, the loadings required for investigations of safety or to satisfy the legal

requirements may not be appropriate for assuring the most satisfactory performance of the

structure with respect to settlement.

For example, since sands deform quickly under change in stress, the settlements of

footings on sand reflect the actual maximum load to which they are subjected. The actual

live load may never approach the value prescribed by the building code, whereas the

actual and computed dead loads should be practically equal. Hence, a column for which

the code ratio of live to dead load is large is likely to settle less than one for which it is

small. Thus, to proportion footings on sand for equal settlement, the engineer should use

the most realistic possible estimate of the maximum live loads instead of arbitrarily inflated

ones.

If a pile cluster is surrounded by fresh fill after the piles are driven, it is likely that the

compressible materials above the bearing stratum will settle progressively for a

considerable time because of the weight of the fill. Under these conditions, the piles may

be acted on by the condition, the pile my be acted on by the additional force due to the skin

friction of the subsiding materials, known as the negative skin friction or drag as described

in Art. 5.5.

The magnitude of the drag per unit of area cannot exceed the shearing strength of the

compressible soil which may usually be considered as one half the unconfined

compressive strength. They are on which the drag acts is the vertical surface that

surrounds the entire group of piles or the entire pile foundation.

Although is it not possible to estimate with great accuracy the additional pile load due to

drag, a rough computation can be made to indicate whether or not the added load will be of

serious consequence, and appropriate measures can be taken. Several examples of

unexpected settlement of large magnitude have been attributed to neglect of negative skin

friction.

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The safe load on a group of piles driven through compressible layers to firm material is

equal to the number of piles in the group multiplied by the safe load per pile. No reduction

need be made because of close spacing of the piles. In fact, it may be preferable to keep

the spacing as small as 2.5 times the diameter of the pile if there is a likelihood that

negative ski friction may develop because of consolidation of the soft deposit. The

additional pile load due to the negative skin friction should be taken into consideration.

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7 RETAINING WALLS

7.1 Introduction

A properly designed retaining wall must satisfy two almost independent requirements. First,

to make the structure safe against failure by overturning and excessive settlement, the

pressure beneath the base must not exceed the allowable soil pressure; furthermore, the

structure as a whole must have an adequate factor of safety with respect to sliding along

its base or along some weak stratum below its base. Second, the entire structure as well

as each of its parts must posses adequate strength. Retaining walls are especially

provided where a high degree of performance under unfavorable climatic conditions is

desired.

Conventional retaining walls can be one of the following types as shown in Fig. 7.1.

1. Simple gravity walls (free standing suitable when 2 to 3 m high) made of masonry, plain

concrete (which can be also semi-gravity type with very little steel) incorporated in the

wall.

2. R.C. cantilever walls used up to 6 m height.

3. R.C. cantilever walls. Counterforts are on the earth side. They are designed as T

beams of tapering section. They are more suitable when walls are greater than 6 m in

height. And the earth behind the wall is to be raised by filling.

4. R.C. buttressed walls. The buttress is on the front of the walls and acts as compression

members transmitting loading to the base slab or to the foundation piles on weak soils.

They are also suitable where the walls are cast against an excavated face. The following

structures are also used to retain earth:

1. Tied back diaphragm walls and circular sheet pile wall with earth fill inside

2. Cantilevered continuous walls of bored concrete piles

3. Cribwork walls

4. Free standing or tied back sheet pile walls

5. Mechanically stabilized earth (MSE) walls.

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Revetments built to stabilize existing earth slopes are different from retaining walls which

are backfilled after the construction of the wall.

(d) (e)

(f)

Fig. 7.1 Types of Retaining structures: (a) and (b) gravity walls; (c) cantilever retaining

walls; (d) R.C. counterfort walls; (f) wall and revetment to stabilize slopes.

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7.3 Nature and Magnitudes of Earth Pressure

Terzaghi demonstrated experimentally that three types of earth pressure coefficients can

be identified when we consider three states of equilibrium of earth behind retaining walls.

They are the following:

2. Coefficient of active earth pressure, KA

3. Coefficient of passive earth pressure, KP

In nature, soil is formed in many ways. In soil deposits also, as in a liquid, a horizontal

pressure exists with depth, and Terzaghi named it as the earth pressure at rest. The

pressure at any depth h is given by

Ph =K0h (7.1)

where ‘K0’ is the coefficient of earth pressure at rest. It has been suggested that for sands

and normally consolidates clays, it can be expressed by the effective stress parameter

by the following formula

K0 = 1- sin (7.2)

For over consolidated clays and sands, the value of K0 depends on the stress history of the

soil and can also be greater than unity. The magnitude can be as given in Table 7.1.

Type of soil K0

Loose sand 0.45-0.50

Dense sand 0.40-0.45

Sand compacted by machines 0.80-1.50

Normally consolidated clays 0.50-0.60

Over consolidated clays 1.0-4.0

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(a) (b) (c)

Fig. 7.2 Types of Earth Pressure: (a) coefficent of earth pressure at rest; (b) coeffcient of

active earth pressure; and (c) coeffcient of passive earth pressure.

The at-rest condition does not involve failure of the soil, but represents a state of elastic

equilibrium. The coefficient of earth pressure at rest with respect to others is shown in Fig.

7.2.

If the wall is to move away from the backfill as shown in Fig. 7.2 (b), a part of the soil mass

behind the wall tends to fail, and this mass will exert pressure on the wall. The coefficient

of the earth pressure corresponding to the minimum pressure on the wall is the coefficient

of the active earth pressure. Here, the soil mass is active in exerting pressure on the wall

and hence the term ‘active earth pressure’.

If we press the wall into the soil mass as shown in Fig. 7.2, a larger mass of earth than in

the active state exerts resistance to the movement. It is in a passive state and the earth

has to be pushed up at failure. The pressure required for a failure to happen is called

passive earth pressure. The term ‘passive pressure’ is used as the soil is in a passive

state. The corresponding coefficient of earth pressure is called the passive pressure

coefficient. The active and passive cases are the two extreme cases brought about by the

proper movement of the retaining structure. If the necessary movement does not take

place, the pressure can have intermediate values.

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Experiments show that in sand as little as 0.1 to 0.3% of horizontal strain only required to

bring about the active state whereas a strain as large as 2 to 3 per cent is required for the

passive state to occur. In loose sands, a much larger movement (of 15%) may be required

for the passive state. It is also evident from Fig. 7.3 that for a wedge type of failure, a

(b)

(a)

Fig. 7.3 Earth pressures developed with various types of walls: (a) Basement walls; (b)

bridge abutments.

rotation of the wall at its base will satisfy the required movement. A deflection at the top of

the order of 0.001H to 0.05H (where H is the height of the wall) is usually taken as

necessary to develop active pressure. It should also be noted that in soils with friction the

mass of soil involved in passive state is more than that in the active state.

However, if we take the case of filling back to basement walls or bridge abutment walls

built after the deck is completed (which cannot move or rotate as in the case in Fig. 7.3)

the pressure on the wall will more likely be “at-rest pressure” than active pressure state.

The pressure will depend on the way the soil in compacted around it. Similarly, in braced

excavations (Fig. 7.4), where the bracings on top are placed before the soil below is

excavated, the walls cannot undergo the necessary movements for active state to happen.

Terzaghi pointes out that many failures that occurred in the subway constructions were due

to wrong assumptions made by the designers that the active earth pressure and

hydrostatic distribution of pressure acted on these timbering also. Actual measurements

have shown that the distribution of pressure against bracing of open cuts is as shown in

Fig. 7.4. Sands and clays produce different pressure as shown in the figure.

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Laboratory experiments have proved the effects of movement of walls on earth pressures.

As already pointed out, the effect of rotation about the base and lateral movement of walls

were carried out by Terzaghi in 1929. With the wall in lateral movement, he found that

initially the resultant pressure was found at a level higher than the middle third (i.e., there

was tendency for parabolic distribution) until yielding was sufficient to produce the slip,

when the resultant acted at H/3. In 1939, Taylor carried out model tests to study the effect

of rotation of the wall around its top as happens in timbering of excavations. In such cases,

the pressure was found to be larger than the active pressure and the resultant also did not

Fig. 7.4 Earth pressure on timbering of excavations: (a) order of struting used; (b)

distribution of earth pressure recommended for design of struts in sand; (c) distribution

recommended in clays.

act at H/3. These experiments fully explained the importance of wall movement and the

field observation. These studies were later continued by Taylor to arrive at the modern

recommendations for calculating pressures on timbering of excavations. The approximate

amounts of movement requires to produce active state in various types of soils are given in

Table 7.2.

Table 7.2 Movement of wall to produce active state (H= Height of wall)

Soil Movement at top

Loose sand 0.002 to 0.004H

Dense sand 0.001 to 0.002H

Stiff cohesive 0.01 to 0.02H

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7.4 Pressure on Retaining Structures

Having understood the basic mechanics of earth pressures, It is easy to investigate the

pressures exerted on different type retaining structures, these are divided into the following

categories:

1. Rigid structures: Rigid types of retaining wall can be one of the following:

a) Gravity walls: These are generally made of masonry in which tension is not

allowed. The stability of wall is purely due to gravity. Such walls are not good as

high walls. They are used for heights up to 6 m. Generally 30 to 50 percent of the

height is provided as base width. Sloping from heel upwards adds to the stability of

the wall.

b) Reinforced concrete wall: They can be one of the three types: cantilever walls

(used up to 7 to 8 m), counterfort (for above 7 m) and buttress type (similar to

counterfort where the vertical walls are built on the opposite site of the back fill).

c) Semi-gravity wall: These are concrete walls whose action is in between the above

two and only small amount of steel is used to reduce the mass of concrete.

d) Crib walls: These are used for moderate heights (up to 7 m) and are made of cribs,

which are filled with granular material or stones. No surcharge other than earth fills

should be placed behind the walls.

2. Sheet pile walls: There are flexible walls and are widely used for waterfront structures.

The two types they are commonly used are the following:

a) Cantilever sheet pile walls (sheet piles simply driven into soil).

b) Anchored sheet pile walls (sheet piles simply driven in and anchored at top).

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3. Cellular cofferdams: These are used for river diversion work as retaining walls, the

retained material being water. The soil fill inside the cell and the sheet pile provide the

stability. More complex forces like tension capacity of steel interlocks are involved in

addition to lateral pressure in their designs. The three main types of Cellular cofferdams

are following:

b) Diaphragm type for quiet waters

c) Clover leaf type used as a corner or anchor cell along with cellular walls

Conditions to be satisfied

Having initial proportioning of the wall, we can calculate the earth pressures and check

the wall for the following conditions:

1. Structural stability: The wall should be checked for stability against overturning and

sliding. The recommended factors of safety used for overturning are, respectively, 1.5

for granular backfill and 2.0 for clayey backfills. The factor of safety against sliding

should be at least 1.5.

2. Foundation stability: There should be enough factor of safety against bearing

capacity failure. (One of the disadvantages of retaining walls as compared to sheet-

pile walls for retaining earth is the need for good foundation soil for retaining walls).

3. Structural design: Simple masonry gravity walls are designed so that the resultant of

all the loads falls within the middle third of the base so that there will be no tension in

the structure. Reinforced concrete walls are designed using standard codes. Mass

concrete walls with nominal steel are designed as gravity walls, allowing limited

tension.

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7.5.1 Design of Basement Walls

In framed construction of buildings, most of the exterior walls above ground level are

generally supported by beams between columns. These beams are also connected to

the floor slab. However, the exterior walls of basements below ground level which have

to resist lateral pressures are usually designed as free-standing cantilever retaining

walls. This is necessary as the bottom floor of the basements is constructed only in the

final stages of work and the foundation slab of walls should not depend on its connection

with basement floor slab for its stability. The retaining walls should be stable by

themselves. As the earth faces of the basement walls have to be waterproofed, the

construction procedures should suit that purpose. The following at rest value of K0

The design of a retaining wall can be summarized by the following steps, of which the first

five relate to proportioning and stability, and the final two constitute the strength

investigation.

1. Choose tentative proportions for the structure, including dimensions for the stem, and

the base as well as the position of the stem at the base.

2. Estimate the magnitude of all the forces acting above the bottom of the base.

3. Determine the point of intersection of the forces found in step 2 with the plane of the

bottom of the base. The location of this point constitutes a check on the stability of the

wall with respect to overturning.

4. Determine the magnitude of the foundation pressure against the base.

5. Check the factor of safety against sliding.

6. Apply load factors to the earth pressure and other loads and compute the

corresponding pressures, reactions, shears, and moments.

7. Calculate the ultimate strengths at critical sections of the elements.

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The computations involved in steps 3 to 7 almost always indicate necessary revisions in

the tentative dimensions of step 1.

Keys are usually provided in the base slabs of retaining walls to increase resistance

against sliding. As shown in Fig. 7.5, it is preferable to place it at the heel on the earth side

as it will be able to mobilize more base resistance than when it is placed at the toe. When

placed at the toe, they are likely to be disturbed by rain water, excavations and other

causes.

450 mm

Gutter

Packed rubble

Weep hole

Precast concrete channel

Drain

Toe Heel

Pa

F PP

Simple gravity walls and reinforced concrete walls will be found very expensive for very

high walls e.g. above 10 m and also in situations where high distributed loads will be

applied on the back fill. In these cases, the pressure on the retaining walls will be very

high and configuration of the wall similar to gravity dams or a wall with a tie back as in

anchored bulkheads can be useful. Yet another solution is the provision of a relieving

platform.

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If we adopt buttress walls the relieving platforms can be built in the from of simple or tied

arches in between these buttress walls. These platforms can also be built without from

work after backfilling the wall to the level of these platforms. If we use straight relieving

platforms, they may have to be supported at the far end on column piles. Use of relieving

platforms is quite common in construction of quay walls and high retaining walls. A

retaining wall with relieving platform is shown in Fig. 7.6.

As rise of water level behind retaining walls increases the lateral pressures, it is very

important that drainage arrangements with weep holes are provided for these walls.

Usually they are provided at 0.9 m to 1.5 m spacing along the length and are connected to

a permeable back drain, continuous on the back of the wall as shown in Fig. 7.7. In

addition, the top layer of the fill should be a low permeability layer provided with a gutter to

drain away the rain water.

Relieving platform

Column

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(a) (b)

(c) (d)

Fig. 7.7 Drainage of retaining walls: (a) vertical drains; (b) inclined draines; (c) horizontal

drains and seal with inclined drainage for clay backfill; (d) drains for clay backfills.

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8 CAISSONS OR WELL FOUNDATIONS

8.1 Introduction

Caissons, which are also known as, wells, have been in use for foundations of bridges and

other important structures since the Roman and Moghul periods in India. Moghuls in

particular used wells for the foundations of their monuments, including Taj Mahal, which is

a standing testimony to the skill of mankind in the earlier days. In modem times, however,

one of the earliest use in India is that for an aqueduct for the upper Ganges Canal

constructed in the earlier part of the 19th century. With the advent of pneumatic sinking in

1850 A.D., and discovery of better materials like reinforced concrete and steel, use of wells

as foundations of bridges gained popularity. Well foundations have been used for most of

the major bridges in India. Materials commonly used for construction are reinforced

concrete, brick or stone masonry. Use of well or caisson foundations is equally popular in

the United States of America and other western countries. The size of caisson used for the

San Francisco Oakland Bridge is 29.6 x 60.1 m in section and 74 m depth.

1. Open caissons

2. Pneumatic caissons

3. Box caissons

Open Caissons

The top and bottom of the caisson (Fig. 8.1a) is open during construction. They may have

any shape in plan as round, oblong, oval, rectangular etc. They are of cellular construction

and the provision of cells reduces the cost of construction. The open-end caisson usually

has a cutting edge. The cutting edge is first fabricated at the site and the first segment of

the shaft is built on it. The soil inside the shaft is removed by grab buckets and the

segment is sunk vertically.

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Another segment is added to the top and the process of sinking is continued by excavating

the soil inside. After the required depth is reached, concrete is placed under water on the

open bottom as a seal to a depth that will contain the hydrostatic uplift pressure so as to

avoid blowing in of the bottom when the water inside the caisson is pumped out. When the

concrete seal is completely cured, the water in the caisson can be pumped out.

after completion of sinking

(a)

Air locks

Air shafts

(b)

Dredged bed

(c)

Fig. 8.1 Types of Caissons: (a) Open Caisson; (b) Pneumatic Caisson; and (c) Box

Caisson

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Advantages of open caissons are:

2. The construction cost is relatively low.

Disadvantages are:

2. Concrete seal placed in water will not be satisfactory.

3. The rate of progress will be slowed down if boulders are met during construction.

Pneumatic Caissons

In the case of pneumatic caissons [Fig. 8.1 (b)], the working chamber at the bottom of the

caisson is kept dry by forcing out water under air pressure. Air locks are provided at the

top. The caisson is sunk as the excavation proceeds. Upon reaching its final depth, the

working chamber is filled with concrete.

1. Control over the work and preparation of foundation for the sinking of caisson are

better since the work is done in the dry.

2. The caisson can be sunk vertically as careful supervision is possible.

3. The bottom of the chamber can be sealed effectively with concrete as it can be placed

dry.

4. Obstruction to sinking, such as boulders etc. tan be removed easily.

Disadvantages are:

2. The depth of penetration below water is limited to about 35 m (3.5 kg/cm2). Higher

pressures are beyond the endurance of the human body.

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Box Caissons

In the case of box caissons [Fig. 8.1(c)] the bottom is closed. This type of caisson is first

cast on land and then towed to the site and then sunk on to a previously levelled

foundation base. It is sunk by filling inside with sand, gravel, concrete or water. The box

type of caisson is also called as floating caisson.

2. It can be used where the construction of other types of caissons are not possible.

Disadvantages are:

2. Deep excavations for seating the caissons at the required depth is very difficult below

water level.

3. Due care has to be taken to protect the foundation from scour.

Stability and strength are the main items to be checked in well design. The forces acting on

the well foundation can be grouped under the two following heads:

1. Vertical loads

Self-weight of well

Buoyancy

Dead load of superstructure and substructure

Live load

Kent ledge during sinking operation

2. Horizontal forces

Braking and tractive effort of vehicles

Forces due to resistance of bearings

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Forces due to water current or waves

Centrifugal forces for bridges on curves

Wind forces or seismic forces

Earth pressures

Other horizontal or uplift forces like those due to provision of transmission line

tower with broken wire condition.

All these effects are converted to resultant vertical and horizontal loads as well as a

moment as shown by W, H and M in Fig. 8.2.

M

H

P1 P

R

0

F 1 2

MB

As the well is deep foundation, its bearing capacity requirements can be easily satisfied.

However, we should be careful to cheek the settlement and stability conditions. There is

considerable increase in bearing capacity if the well is founded in deep cohesionless soils.

the following empirical formula for allowable bearing pressure for sands based on its N

value, for safety against shear failure can be used.

1

q u [5.4 N 2 B 16(100 N 2 ) D] (kN/m2) (8.1)

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where,

qu = safe bearing capacity in kN/m2

N = corrected SPT value

B =smaller dimension of well

D = depth of well foundation below scour level.

The bearing capacity of a well in clays should be based on both its shear strength and

settlement. As we have seen, when dealing with piles, the increase in bearing capacity of

clays with depth is not as much as in sands.

The external forces acting on a heavy well are the vertical forces W, the horizontal forces,

H and moment M. there can be also transverse forces due to wind. These are resisted by

the following forces acting on the well which are also shown in Fig. 8.2.

2. Friction along the embedded height = P1

3. Vertical reaction from base = R

4. Moment at base due to unequal distribution of base pressure = MB

5. Friction at base = F [The friction at base is represented by ].

The difference between various methods of analysis depends on the assumptions made.

For example, the value of P1 will depend on whether we consider it at the ultimate state or

the elastic state called the state of incipient failure. The distribution of the reaction P1 will

be at the Rankine states, if we assume ultimate failure condition. On the other hand, if we

assume the elastic state only, then the reaction will depend on the amount of movement of

the wall and we use the modulus of sub-grade reaction method to determine the

distribution of forces.

Similarly, the point about which we assume the rotation of the well to take place makes

large differences in the resisting forces. The magnitude and the direction of frictional forces

at the base will depend on the assumed location of the point of rotation of the well. Usually

for elastic analysis, we assume that the well tilts about the centre of base ultimate failure

that the well rotates about a point 0.2 D above the base.

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The accuracy of the method to determine stability depends on whether we take all the

above forces into account or neglect some of them. For example, in the first method

suggested by Terzaghi, he neglected some of the frictional forces.

Two types of soils are considered in the stability analysis of well foundations. They are

cohesionless and cohesive soils. This chapter deals with the lateral stability of well

foundation only. The vertical bearing capacity of deep foundations is also applicable to well

foundations, and as such this aspect of the problem is not considered here.

A well foundation used for a bridge pier shall carry both vertical and lateral loads. Vertical

loads comprise of dead and live loads. The dead loads include the weights of

superstructure and substructure. The vertical line loads are brought on to the structure due

to the passing of vehicles over the bridge. The lateral loads are caused due to braking or

traction of vehicles, water current, wind, earthquakes etc. The lateral forces might act at

different points on a pier, but their effect can be simulated by considering an equivalent

force acting at bearing level.

Fig. 8.3 shows a typical rectangular well foundation with all the external load and the

resisting forces acting on the well in cohesionless soil. The external loads are,

WT = the vertical load at the bearing level of pier which includes loads of superstructure

(excluding the pier) and the live loads acting on it,

WS = weight of pier and well (considering relief due to buoyancy),

Pu = equivalent lateral load acting at the bearing level at height H above the maximum

scour level under ultimate lateral load.

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The external forces are resisted by the soil surrounding the well. Since the well is a

massive one with depth/width ration (D f /B) normally not exceeding a value of 3, it is

assumed to rotate as a rigid body about a point O lying on the base of the well on the axis

passing through well. When the well rotates as a unit passive pressure develops in the

front and active pressure at the back, and the active pressure is normally neglected in the

analysis since it is quite small compared to the magnitude of the passive pressure. The

high lateral pressure that develops at the bottom of the back of the wall is assumed to be

resisted by a line load Fc at the bottom of the well.

1. Stability analysis of wells in cohesionless soils.

2. Stability analysis of wells in cohesive soils.

The principle of analysis in both the cases are based on the principles enunicated by

Broms (1964) for short piles.

In both the cases it is required to determine the depth of embedment of the well (grip

length) under ultimate lateral load conditions. With a suitable factor of safety, the

movement or rotation of the well at the bearing level should be within the permissible

limits. WT

Pu

Scour level

WS Ff

D

Pf

O

pb mkpDL

eb Rb

B

Fig. 8.3 Satiability analysis of well foundation in cohesionless soils.

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9 SOIL EXPLORATION - GEOLOGICAL INVESTIGATION OF SITES

9.1 Introduction

stratigraphy and pertinent physical properties of soils underlying the site so that a safe and

an economical foundation may be designed. Soil stratigraphy is most commonly

determined by making borings, test pits etc. and collecting soil samples, disturbed and

undisturbed, and carrying out necessary tests on these samples. Though boring is most

widely used method of subsoil investigation, there are many other methods of subsoil

investigation and more common of these methods are discussed briefly in this chapter.

The characteristic of soils are generally variable and may change sharply within limited

distances. Degree of thoroughness and completeness required of an investigation is linked

with job requirements and availability of time and funds.

compressibility and permeability. Often the chemical nature of subsoil and ground water

may be desired to evaluate hazard of corrosion on the foundation structure.

Physical properties of soils may be evaluated from in-situ test and also from laboratory

tests on undisturbed, disturbed and/or remoulded soil samples. Certain methods for in-situ

measurements of soil properties are very briefly described. Measurements of soil

properties in the laboratory, requirements for obtaining undisturbed samples of soil are also

discussed. It is imperative that the data obtained from field and laboratory investigation is

presented in a systematic manner.

To achieve the objective stated at the very beginning of this section, soil investigation may

have to be carried out in stages. On initial broad determination of stratigraphy and physical

properties, particular zone may be investigated in greater detail. Furthermore, it is

desirable that information predicted from soil investigation carried prior to construction work

is compared with information revealed say by excavation etc. during construction work. If

there is significant variation between reality and prediction, then further investigation may

be necessary to recheck the design considerations.

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It may also be necessary to carry out certain post-construction observations to ensure that

assumptions made in design are satisfied. Observations for pore water pressure,

settlement etc. after an embankment is constructed can be included in this category. Such

post construction observations may not be explicit in the objective stated earlier but should

form part of the general soil investigation.

Thus subsoil investigation in general may consist of the following four stages.

required for design.

2. Amplification, if necessary, of specific portions of the initial investigation to obtain more

complete information, as desirable during the design phase.

3. Verification of anticipated foundation conditions during construction so that changes

may be made, if necessary, to ensure proper performance and control for assurance of

compliance with design.

4. Observation of structure and soil performance following construction.

5. Item (1) and (3) are to be considered essential. Items (2) and (4) may be limited or

even eliminated, depending on the nature of the project.

The depth of investigation depends on the size and type of proposed structure and

character and sequence of subsurface strata. In general, the depth of investigation shall be

such so as to expose any stratum that would adversely affect the performance of the

proposed structure.

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Thumb Rules

(i) Unless bedrock is encountered first, the investigation shall be carried to the point at

which the vertical stress due to proposed structure is equal to or less than 10 percent of

original effective stress at the point before the structure is constructed. The depth of

investigation may be increased to the point, where increase in stress due to structure is

only 5 percent or less of the original stress when compressible strata of soft to medium

softness is encountered extending to the recommended depth of investigation. In absence

of structural loadings, the above ruling may be simplified and stated as follows.

(ii) (a) It is good practice to have one boring carried the bedrock or at least to a level well

below the anticipated level of influence of the building.

(b) For light structures, insensitive to settlement, the borings should be extended to a depth

equal to 4 times the probable footing width but to not less than 6 m below the lowest part of

the foundation.

(c) For more heavily loaded structures such as multi-storey structures and for framed

structures at least 50 percent of the borings should be extended to a depth not less than 15

m below the lowest part of the foundation.

(d) Where bedrock is encountered it should be proved by boring to a minimum depth of 3

m.

Number and relative positions of various field tests such as boreholes, static cone

penetration tests, dynamic cone penetration tests, plate load tests, pressuremeter tests

etc. depend upon:

2. Type of structure – sensitive, insensitive etc.

3. Size or extent of the job

Whether soil profile is regular or erratic can be known from the initial few boreholes. When

the area to be investigated is large and/or when the plant layout is not finalised, a few

widely spaced preliminary boreholes are recommended. these preliminary boreholes give

rough ideas about the nature of sub-soil in the area and help in planning detailed

investigation. For a job in which plant layout is practically finalised, one or other of the field

tests, depending on merit, are spaced to fall in all the important plant units. These tests

may be kept to the minimum initially and when warranted by erratic subsoil nature, they

can be supplemented by additional field tests.

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At all times, the investigation should be conducted considering the requirements and needs

of the structure. For structures housing sensitive equipment such as atomic reactors etc.,

investigation has to be sufficiently extensive so as to reveal soil profile with great precision.

However, for ordinary building investigation can be limited, to economise in money and

time, and somewhat more conservative values can be considered for soil parameters

needed in the design.

In case of buildings, certain guidelines are given in in standards for selecting spacing and

number of boreholes and or trial pits. For example, IS 1892 considers that a single

borehole at the centre of the plot is enough for small and less important buildings. For

compact building site on about 0.4 hectare, it specifics five bores, one in each corner and

one at the centre. Author considers it is advisible to have minimum three bores for a virgin

site area. For very large site of industrial and residential colonies, it is advisible to have

number of boreholes on a grid pattern.

In case of exploration for highways, the spacing of boreholes in general could be stated as

one at every interval of 200 m. This spacing may be reduced to 50 m when the subsoil is

highly erratic and may be increased to 500 m when the subsoil is very uniform.

When the exploration is to be carried out for earth and rockfill dams, guidelines given in IS

6995 would be beneficial.

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9.3 Methods for Sub-soil Investigation

(1) Aerial For intensive investigation in

Photography accessible area aerial photography

is not essential for soil exploration.

For inaccessible and unfamiliar

areas air photography may be

adopted as an aid in planning for

detailed exploration work.

(2) Geophysical They are grouped as (a) seismic

Methods (b) electrical (c) magnetic (d)

gravitational and (e) sonic. Shock

or seismic waves are created by

detonating small charges or by

striking a rod or a plate near the

surface. The radiating waves are

picked up and time of travel from

source recorded by detectors

known as geophones or

seismometers. In seismic

method, either refracted or

reflected waves are detected.

(a) Seismic

method

(i) Refraction In this method, time of arrival of Used to determine depth to rock or

method waves refracted at interfaces depths of significantly differing soil

between different strata are strata. Can be used only when

recorded. velocity of travel in lower layers is

significantly greater than the upper

ones. This method is usually limited

to depths up to 30 m in a single

stratum.

(ii) Reflection Here seismometers record the This method is usually adopted to

method travel time of seismic waves determine depth of deep bed rocks.

98

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Method Descriptions Applicability

reflected from interface between Generally, applied for depths

adjoining strata. exceeding 600 m. At present this

method is mainly used in offshore

investigation.

(iii) Velocity In this method, seismic waves These methods are used for

sounding are generated. Their travel times determining dynamic, elastic and

methods and hence travel velocities in shear modulus which enable to

travelling through soil along the estimate coefficient of elastic

hole in down or up direction or uniform compression etc.

across the holes are determined.

(b) Electrical In this method four metallic Used to determine vertical as well

resistivity spikes to serve as electrodes are as horizontal extent of soil strata at

method driven into the ground at equal foundation site for large structures,

intervals along a line. A known such as dams. Depth of exploration

potential is then applied between is generally limited to about 30 m.

the outermost electrodes and Also used to obtain data for

potential drop is measured designing electrical grounding

between the innermost system.

electrodes. Flow of electric

current is also measured. This

enables to estimate resistivity of

stratum. From known resistivity of

different strata, prediction can be

made about the nature of the

stratum.

(c) Magnetic Rarely used in civil engineering

method works.

(d) Gravitational Rarely used in civil engineering

method works.

99

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9.4 Details and Presentation of Soil Investigation Report

detailed soil investigation report. It is also called the Geotechnical Report. This report gives

the detail of the field and laboratory investigations that were carried out and the final

recommendations. The usual format used by most agencies for a building site is as follows

It should be suitably modified for other works like an embankment cutting.

b) Data of field investigations (log of boreholes with diagrams and data of in-situ tests)

a) List of routine laboratory tests conducted (grain size, limits, swell tests, unconfined

results of laboratory in standard format) this may be presented as appendix.

b) List of special test conducted. Compression, triaxial test, consolidation test, and test of

water with reference to tables in which they are presented.

This is the heart of the report and should be clear and concise. It is reported under the

following subheads:

a) Description of soil condition as evaluated from all field and laboratory results.

b) Analysis and discussion of field and laboratory test results.

c) Design criteria like allowable settlements to be used.

d) Calculation for determining safe bearing capacity, capacity of pile, slope stability, etc.

e) Recommendation on choice of type of foundation, allowable bearing pressure, slope

stability, ground improvement, etc.

f) Recommendation of soil parameter for structural design.

g) Recommendation for safely measure to be taken during construction such as

excavation.

100

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Section 5: Conclusions and final recommendations.

This last part of the report should give definite recommendations based on the field and

laboratory results.

Note: the format has been recommended by the Indian Geotechnical Society .

101

101/102

REFERENCES

International Edition, Civil Engineering Series.

Publications.

Fourth Revised and Enlarged Edition, UBSPD Publishers.

Publications, New Delhi.

5. Peck, R. B., Hanson, W. E., and Thornburn, T. H. (1974). Foundation Engineering. 2nd

Edition, Wiley International Edition.

Soil Mechanics and Foundation Division, Americal Scoiety of Civil Engineers, Vol. 99,

No. SM-1, pp. 45-73.

102

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